Gordon and Randwick-Petersham were the big movers after three finals hopefuls all went down in an extraordinary round of McDonald's Men's Premier Cricket completed on Saturday.
The Stags started the day in eighth but finished it in sixth spot after a remarkable outright victory over Sydney at Chatswood Oval.
The Tigers looked to have ended Gordon's finals hopes earlier in the day, successfully defending a skinny first innings total at Chatswood Oval.
The visitors made just 103 on day one but bowled the Stags out for just 90 early on day two.
The second innings was a different story, however, Gordon fighting back to claim a vital outright win after chasing down 232 in the second innings.
Randwick-Petersham is also back in the top six hunt, beating Hawkesbury to move from 10th to seventh on the table with just one round remaining.
St George, Eastern Suburbs and UTS North Sydney all suffered what could be terminal defeats.
Saints were unable to defend 152 against Northern District, Norths were easily rolled by neighbour Mosman and Fairfield-Liverpool were comfortable winners over Easts.
Sydney Uni, Sydney, Manly-Warringah, Fairfield-Liverpool and Northern District have all qualified for the finals.
Five teams remain in the fight – mathematically at least – for the last of the play-off spots.
Gordon (44 points) heads the pack from Randwick-Petersham (40), Eastern Suburbs (40), St George (39) and Wests (38).
The Gordon v Eastern Suburbs one-dayer at Chatswood Oval next Saturday is likely to decide the final spot.
Blacktown Mounties will finish last after just falling short of knocking over Penrith in a thriller at Joe McAleer Reserve.
Chasing 124 for victory, the Panthers crawled over the line for the loss of nine wickets.
At Manly Oval, Sutherland teenager Ethan Deal almost pulled off a miracle against an attack featuring former Test bowlers Morne Morkel and Steve O'Keefe.
Showing maturity beyond his years, Deal expertly farmed the strike in putting on a 20-run partnership with No.11 Pushpinder Singh, taking the Sharks to within seven runs of victory.
But his heroic knock came to an end when he smacked Jack Edwards to Cam Merchant at deep mid-wicket, the visitors all out for 215 chasing 221.
Earlier, captain Chris Williams had made a valiant 97 against an at times unplayable Morkel, who claimed 4-44 from 20 overs.
It was Williams' sixth ninety of his career.
His team may have lost out on maximum points but Sydney's Ben Manenti had a day to remember against Gordon.
The spinner took eight wickets and scored 90 runs across two innings. Manenti claimed career best figures of 7-41 in the first innings.
And after making a first innings duck, UNSW opener Jack Attenborough scored a second innings ton to lead his side to victory over Campbelltown-Camden.