The cut-throat scenario of the Merv Scholes Cup, where just two teams contest the Seeka KI Western BOP Championship title next weekend, has set up a intriguing top-of-the-table clash at Grenada Park tomorrow between Arataki and Judea.
At stake is the prospect of Western Bay championship home ground advantage to the winner. Also on the line is the Merv Scholes Cup, awarded to the Western BOP top-six competition winners and the WBOPRFS Challenge trophy of the Hardy Rosebowl.
If Arataki win the encounter on the Mount Maunganui peninsula, they book a home final, take out the Merv Scholes trophy and retain the Hardy Rosebowl.
A Judea victory would put them on equal points with their opponents and they would grab the home final against Arataki at Maharaia Winiata Park, courtesy of a better points differential. They would also take home the Merv Scholes trophy and the Hardy Rosebowl.
If Judea falls at the last hurdle, it opens the way for Mount Maunganui to contest the final stanza against Arataki.
The Mount Maunganui 2nd XV need Arataki to beat Judea, while the Mount side must get past Matakana Island on the island.
Tauranga Sports and Rangataua will play for pride when they square off in the third Merv Scholes encounter at the Tauranga Domain.
The finalists in the second tier Western BOP competition have already been found, with Te Puna and Greerton Marist having already banked enough points to contest the final next weekend.
If Te Puna continue their unbeaten run in the Phelan Cup they will book a home final and win the Phelan Cup.
Tomorrow, Te Puna will travel to play Rangiuru in Te Puke, Greerton Marist meet Eastern Districts at home, with Katikati hosting Te Puke Sports at Moore Park.
All three WBOPRFS Challenge trophies are again on the line this weekend. Tauranga Sports premiers will put the Jordan Cup up against Te Puna, Tauranga Sports Colts play Te Puna Colts with the Oliver Cup at stake, with Arataki meeting Judea for the Hardy Rosebowl.
Seeka KI Western BOP senior draw, July 6
(All games 1pm unless specified)
Merv Scholes Cup: Tauranga Sports v Rangataua, Tauranga Domain; Arataki v Judea, Grenada Park (2.45pm); Matakana Island v Mount Maunganui, Matakana Island.
Points: Arataki 8, Judea 6, Mount Maunganui 4, Tauranga Sports 2, Matakana Island 2, Rangataua 2.
Phelan Cup: Katikati v Te Puke Sports, Moore Park (2.45pm); Rangiuru v Te Puna, Centennial Park (2.45pm); Greerton Marist v Eastern Districts, Greerton Park.
Points: Te Puna 8, Greerton Marist 6, Eastern Districts 3, Rangiuru 3, Katikati 2, Te Puke Sports 2.
WBOPRFS Challenge Trophy, July 6
(Holder in italics)
WBOPRFS Premier (Jordan Cup) Tauranga Sports v Te Puna, Tauranga Domain.
WBOPRFS Colts (Oliver Cup) Tauranga Sports v Te Puna, Tauranga Domain.
Seeka KI Western BOP competition
Arataki v Judea.