Fine, warm weather is predicted for the Rugby World Cup kickoff, although rain looms over the rest of the tournament's first weekend.
MetService has forecast a week of fine weather in the lead-up to the tournament, with clear skies, morning frosts and highs of around 16C in Auckland from tomorrow until Thursday.
A southwesterly change is expected by the end of the week, but most forecasters were confident it would come after the opening match between the All Blacks and Tonga on September 9.
MetService weather ambassador Bob McDavitt said: "The whole of the next week should be warmer than the last few days. It's also likely to be fine on Friday, but our models are still humming and hah-ing about the first weekend. There's a question mark over the Saturday."
There is a greater likelihood of rain in Dunedin, where England and Argentina begin their cup campaigns on September 10, but the new roof at Stadium Otago will keep fans dry.
Eden Park head groundsman Mark Perham told the Weekend Herald his biggest fear was a rainy lead-up week when 1000 feet would be stomping on the pitch in opening ceremony rehearsals.
Mr McDavitt had reassuring words for groundsmen across the country: "The dry conditions next week should help to finish off the grounds nicely."
Friday, Sept 9:
Probably fine, clear skies with a high of 16C
* All Blacks v Tonga
Saturday, Sept 10:
Warm but possibly rainy in the South Island, also potential for rain in Auckland
* Scotland v Romania
* Fiji v Namibia
* France v Japan
* Argentina v England
Sunday, Sept 11:
* Australia v Italy
* Ireland v USA
* South Africa v WalesBy Isaac Davison @Isaac_Davison Email Isaac