The Western Heights High School 1st XV rugby team will look to defend their home fortress one last time this season.
They have not lost at home all year and will play their final home game tomorrow at noon, against a Cambridge High School 1st XV team. It is a do-or-die match for both teams who are still chasing a national title.
The winning side will qualify for the National Top 4 co-ed schools competition - being held at Rotorua Boys' High School next weekend - while the losers will end their season.
Western Heights co-coach Steve Smith said it had been a while since they had been in this position. "I think it was about seven years ago we were in the same position and they won that game to make the top four."
Western Heights defeated Stratford High School (Taranaki) on Wednesday to get to the Chiefs region co-ed final. Smith said he expected Cambridge to be a tough challenge. "I think they have a pretty strong programme because they have been in the top four a couple of times the last few years."
It was great to have the game at home again, where they had not lost this season. "This ground has been pretty good for us. I don't think we have lost here yet but this is a step up."
He said it would be great for the school to progress to the National Top 4 co-ed competition. "Western Heights High School has a really proud history from years ago where they were regularly among the top in the country, and for older past pupils they remember that and keep an eye on Western Heights rugby," he said.