THE Bendigo District Cricket Association must win in its remaining three matches to have any chance of qualifying for the Melbourne Country Week grand final.
Poor batting cost Bendigo dearly in Monday's first round clash with Murray Valley at Greenvale.
After being sent into bat, Bendigo was dismissed for 98.
MV overcame some good bowling from Bendigo to pass the total for the loss of eight wickets. They were eventually dismissed for 117.
Ben DeAraugo took 3-19 for Bendigo, while off-spinner Gareth Davies took 2-22.
Bendigo then smashed 3-122 off 15 overs in its second innings. Sam Johnston made an unbeaten 61 off 44 balls.
"You're not going to win too many games making 98,'' BDCA coach Max Taylor said.
"We bowled well and fielded well, but we were 30 runs short with the bat.
"Our carnival is far from over. Last year we lost our first game but by the end of day three we were on top of the ladder."
Earlier in the day, Huntly North Epsom's Michael Hanson (32 off 50 balls) was the only batsman to pass 20 in Bendigo's first innings.
After losing opener Travis King for 2 and Anthony West for 6, the BDCA recovered to be 2-54.
However, the loss of Cam Taylor for 16 sparked a stunning collapse. From 2-54 the BDCA lost its final eight wickets for just 44 runs to be all out 98.
Gareth Davies (6), Sam Johnston (1), Ben DeAraugo (14), Linton Jacobs (2), Adrian Pappin (9), Adam Burns (1 not out) and Brent Hamblin (2) were Bendigo's other batsmen.
"The wicket was a bit dampish and we would have bowled first had we won the toss,'' Taylor said.
"But that's no excuse, the batting was pathetic. There was a number of poor shots."
Bendigo plays Sale-Maffra at Carlton in Tuesday's second round.
Sale-Maffra scored a thrilling one-wicket win off the final ball of the day against Leongatha on Monday.
In the other two games, Mornington-Peninsula 7-339 thumped Bairnsdale 92, while Geelong 354 outclassed South West 125.