OLD Scotch earned the right to play Fingal in next week's NTFA division 2 second semi-final after holding off Evandale to win a closely contested qualifying final by 11 points in heavy conditions at Lilydale yesterday.
The Thistles had the better of the first half, leading by eight points at quarter-time and 20 at the main break.
The Eagles fought back into the contest in the third quarter to tie up scores at three-quarter-time but it was Scotch that finished off the better in the final term to record a 6.12 (48) to 5.7 (37) victory.
George Walker and Nick D'Emden were the only multiple goalkickers with two each for the Thistles. Evandale had five scorers who booted singles.
"We're pretty even sides, and it was always going to be a tough game," Old Scotch coach Kim Curtis said.
"It came down to four quarters of football and we played three and they played one and nearly stole it from us.
"We kicked six or seven points in the first quarter and should have been able to open it up but that's football.
"It was slippery conditions and wasn't fancy football - just a slog and tussle for the ball and our boys stood up pretty well which was good."
Curtis put their inaccurate kicking down to some finals' pressure and said it would be something they would need to work on this week.
"I put it to our boys at three- quarter-time that we had a game on our hands and they went back to the team thing, hunting the ball, and did really well."
Curtis praised the game of Sam Burrill in the middle and Sam Lyne down back.
"Sam Moore tagged Conroy through the middle and did a really good job on him too," he said.
"Both the White brothers, Charlie and Duncan, were good, and I don't think we had a passenger today.
"Some players were down but they did their bit playing on their man and doing the little one- percenters which was good and that wins you finals."
Curtis said he was looking forward to playing the benchmark of the competition in Fingal next week.
"We didn't have any injuries and ended up resting Rowan Smith as a late withdrawal and brought up Sam Bond who played well.
"We should have Josh Frankcombe and Jack Chorley to come back into the side as well."
James Conroy, Justin Hutton and Jason Bennett were Evandale's best players.