Election tightens in Victoria's Benambra

Three political adversaries in Victoria's northeast have one thing in common - the feeling that regions don't get their fare share.

But the same candidates have very different ideas on how they'll change that if successful on polling day.

Bordered by the Murray River and the Alpine National Park, the seat of Benambra has been a conservative heartland since before federation.

Incumbent Liberal Bill Tilley has held it since 2006 but independent Jacqui Hawkins is on his heels after narrowly missing out in 2018.

Mr Tilley isn't taking anything for granted and believes the Liberal Nationals have a shot at claiming office.

"Myself and my team are committed to doing the very best we can," he says.

"There certainly is a mood for change."

Ms Hawkins says Benambra's appetite for independent representation has grown over the past four years, fuelled by concerns about healthcare access and a perception Mr Tilley would continue to be neglected by a Labor government.

Much of Benambra lies within the federal district of Indi, which reinstated independent Helen Haines for a second term earlier this year.

"People can see the report card and they're not impressed, so they know independents can work across the political divide," Ms Hawkins says.

"It's not to say the incumbent hasn't done work, it's just he hasn't been effective."

Mr Tilley says one only has to drive around the communities of Benambra to see the contributions to schools, early learning centres and roads he has procured under governments of all stripes.

"There will always be the shadow boxing between opposition and the government of the day but those conversations do end up in being able to come to an agreement and get certain things done, " he says.

Labor's Benambra candidate Mark Tait credits Mr Tilley as being a hard-worker for the region but reckons he faces a difficult road as an opposition MP.

"It's just very hard for him to get stuff through when he's in opposition," he says.

The Labor candidate also describes Ms Hawkins as enthusiastic, hard-working and a good opponent.

The hints of mutual respect, despite the political implications, provide momentary relief in an often negative, emotionally-charged and bitter campaign across the state.

On the first day of pre-polling in the electorate's largest centre, Wodonga, a Labor volunteer suffered a broken leg and required surgery after an altercation with an angry voter over COVID-19 lockdowns.

The injured man, discharged almost a week later, is not pursuing charges but a police investigation is ongoing.

According to the Victorian Electoral Commission, 13,219 early and postal votes had been lodged for Benambra as of Wednesday night.

On Thursday, Opposition leader Matt Guy joined Mr Tilley on the border to announce a plan to lower the driving age to 17 but focus quickly shifted to the key local issue - whether to upgrade Albury Base Hospital or build a new campus on a greenfield site.

"If you want a new hospital on the border, people will need to support (and) continue to trust me and vote for me," Mr Tilley says.

Mr Tait is pushing Labor's choice to upgrade the brownfield site, Mr Tilley insists a new hospital is the only way forward and Ms Hawkins - while supportive of the bipartisan and interstate commitment to border health infrastructure - says she'll fight for a greenfield development if elected on Saturday.

Mr Tilley accuses Ms Hawkins of fence-sitting.

"You can't flip-flop," he says.

"You've got to be able to have the strength and the mettle to tell your community exactly what's on your mind ... and you've got to be able to read the room and know what the community are really asking for."

Ms Hawkins denies any position shift.

"I have had my policy out form day-dot, on my website, very clearly articulating the greenfield site was the option," she tells AAP.

Labor has been unclear about the ongoing role of Wodonga hospital but maintains it will not close.