By Warren Anscombe
A cracking clash at the foot of the mountains brings a close to the regular season, when the New Zealand Warriors face the Penrith Panthers.
This encounter will no doubt decide the fate of many teams in their quest for Top 4/8 honours, so all eyes will be glued to this fixture come Sunday evening.
Penrith have won 8 of the past 15 clashes at home against the Warriors, however more recently they have won just one of the past 5 clashes.
The Warriors were also successful 30-20 at Mt Smart Stadium earlier this year, so this will give them confidence in what is a must win game.
Clashes between the two are generally entertaining with plenty of points on offer, with only 2 of the past 15 matches here tallying less than 42pts.
In fact 24 of the 28 clashes between the two at all venues have returned 42pts or more, so despite the poor weather predicted we may well still see an expansive game.
The Panthers have been the surprise packet this year occupying a Top 4 position for most of the season, so it would be disappointing for them if they were to drop out with a loss here.
I think that will be incentive enough to get the job done and end the finals aspirations of the Warriors in what promises to be an enthralling encounter.