This weekend's Loaded WaiBOP Premiership match between Flying Mullet Pāpāmoa and Taupō at Gordon Spratt Reserve looks like it will go a long way to determining the ultimate destination of the 2018 title.
Both teams picked up three points on Saturday while competition leaders Tauranga Boys' College were held to a draw at Otūmoetai.
Taupō had the luxury of sitting back and waiting for the afternoon's results to roll in after securing their win following Friday evening's default by scheduled opponents Tauranga Blue Rovers.
They were awarded the regulation 3-0 victory in such circumstances which, as a tidy boost to their goal difference, could prove vital over the closing weeks.
Pāpamoā were made to work very hard for their points against a Waikato Unicol side that knew defeat would all but extinguish their already slim title hopes.
All the goals were scored in the first half with Riku Soejima keeping his golden run going for Unicol with another goal, although a Dean Styles special and a Cole Peverley penalty had given the visitors a 2-1 advantage by the break.
They held that through a niggly second half and now sit level with Taupō on 32 points but ahead of the Lakesiders on goal difference.
Tauranga Boys' College now head the table by a solitary point after being held to a scoreless draw at Fergusson Park.
They have, however, played two more games than both Pāpamoā and Taupō, but have yet to play Pāpamoa and must still travel to Taupō, so there are some cracking games to look forward to.
Otūmoetai's point moved them up fifth in a congested mid-table.
The WaiBOP Championship's top two have now been confirmed after the weekend's results with Ngaruawahia United and Kawerau Sports confirming promotion.
There is, for the first time this season the very real prospect of a title race, after Ngaruawahia suffered their second defeat of the season, which allowed Kawerau to move to within a point of the Green Machine.
Otūmoetai's reserves put the spanner in Ngaruawahia's works with a 4-3 win at Centennial Park, while Kawerau were always comfortable in winning 4-1 over a Blue Rovers club that, despite their first team's default, was still able to field a reserve team.
Krishaant Singh's double went a long way to helping secure the points for Kawerau.
Ngaruawahia, crucially, have a game in hand over Kawerau but the two sides meet at Tarawera Park on August 11 in what's already looking like a cracker.
In the Championship's other games, Waikato Unicol's reserves all but sealed third with a 5-1 win over Cambridge, while Te Puke United won 3-0 against Taupo's reserves.
The top two in the WaiBOP Women's Premier League both picked up comfortable home wins to move the title race into another week.
Tauranga City Bay SportsMed easily dispatched McKay Tokoroa 4-0 and have the chance to seal a second consecutive title when Whakatāne Town come visiting on Sunday.
Danaya McKenzie, Talia Entwisle, Nicola Hingston and Alice Cotter scored Tauranga's goals in this one.
Whakatāne stayed four points behind Tauranga with two games to go after a 4-1 home win over Papamoa.
A tight first half saw Maree Wooddin's goal give the visitors the lead before Naomi Courtney-Tennent levelled things up 10 minutes before the break.
In a neat piece of symmetry, Kaelee Doherty scored 10 minutes after half time to break the game open for Whakatāne, before Courtney-Tennent completed a hat-trick with two goals in the final 12 minutes.
Meanwhile, Ngongotahā AFC went down 2-0 to Onehunga Mangere United AFC in Auckland in their Northern Regional Football League division 2 match.
They remain eighth on the ladder.
In the Bay of Plenty men's competition, Rotorua United AFC Mens Bay 1 had a 7-2 win over Papamoa Old Boys Bay 2 to remain top of the standings.
Rotorua United AFC Mens Bay 2 went down to Otūmoetai Legends 2-0.
For full results click here.