Conservative Party Leader Colin Craig has picked up the gauntlet thrown down by Winston Peters over Foreign Minister Murray McCully's East Coast Bays seat.
The prospect of Mr McCully stepping aside in the safe National seat is seen as Mr Craig's best chance of getting his party into Parliament.
Having accused Mr Craig of pillaging NZ First's manifesto, Mr Peters continued trading shots with Mr Craig as both parties held their conferences in Auckland this weekend.
That included Mr Peters yesterday saying he had been asked by people in East Coast Bays angry with the prospect of a Conservatives-National deal to consider running there himself if that happened.
"I think it's an exciting thought... we'll wait around and think about it.
"The fact is the machinations and the scheming and plotting of some parties may well come totally undone if they carry on, but we'll make that decision in a future date not too long from now."
Mr Craig said he did not believe Mr Peters would run, and if he did, the NZ First Leader would place third.
"I don't think he would, and I'm not at all worried if he does. [He would place] behind me, no question about that."
"Our polling is Murray McCully has got 30-odd per cent already, I've got 15, nearly 40 per cent undecided, I don't think Winston Peters would get anywhere near what I'd get."
Asked about Mr Peters claim that Mr Craig had copied his policy ideas, Mr Craig said: "I think he realises that we're closing in on him.
"I've made no secret about the fact the we want to move from fifth place to fourth place. He can do the math - he realises he's number four.
"I'm getting some big turn-outs to Grey Powers, bigger than he is. And I think he's got fair right to be concerned. We're a young, growing party and I think we're closing in on him."
He said he had looked at New Zealand First's website "some years ago" but Mr Peters allegations of plagiarism were "a strange claim".
Labour Leader David Cunliffe said what Mr Peters decided with regards to East Coast Bays was up to him.
"But I will repeat my challenge to John Key: he should not do any pre-election coalition deals. We have ruled out any pre-election deals and also challenge him to support us on outlawing coat tailing."
Next article: Colin Craig reveals Conservative Party's bottom line