With just two rounds of qualifying play in the Versatile Tauranga Williams Cup, New World Te Puke have a slim theoretical chance to make the playoffs - but Geyser City and Tauranga Boys' stand in their way.
To make the semifinals they'll have to beat the Rotorua side and at Geyser City and Bond and Co Tauranga Boys' and hope that other results go their way.
Tauranga Boys' is one of two teams sitting on the cusp of qualifying, the other being Generation Homes Lake Taupō, both facing stern challenges on Saturday.
Both teams have the opportunity to stand up as genuine Williams Cup contenders, if they can defeat more fancied rivals in round six.
Lake Taupō has home ground advantage, when Carrus Mount Maunganui pays a visit to Owen Delany Park this weekend. The home side's ace card is their overseas player Drew Brierley, who has been in outstanding form with his willow weapon. Brierley leads the Williams Cup batting stakes, with 315 runs at average of 78.75, including two centuries.
When the going gets tough for Mount Maunganui they turn to experience in their ranks. Skipper Dale Swan along with Nick Smith, Peter Drysdale and Matt Golding, have weathered multiple successful Baywide cricket campaigns. All four Mount Maunganui stalwarts, have played a big part in the Mount winning the Hart Family Trophy (Baywide Champions of Champions) on eight occasions in the last 12 seasons.
Tauranga Boys' College have an equally stern challenge to front up to on Saturday, when they face off against Element IMF Cadets at the Tauranga Domain. However they have two batsmen who are game winners when on song - in player/coach Tim Clarke who has a 2020 Williams Cup ton to his name and Bay Development century-maker Niven Dovey.
The Cadets' current season has seen the emergence of several young men who look to have a big future in Baywide premier cricket and beyond. Andrew Mascall, Finn Dempsey and Spencer Wills have all made their Cadets first team debuts in the current season.
In the other Williams Cup weekend action, Eves Realty Greerton will be heavily favoured to dispatch Bayleys Central Indians who sit at the bottom of the standings.
Versatile Tauranga Williams Cup Draw:
Generation Homes Lake Taupō vs Carrus Mount Maunganui, Owen Delany Park; Bayleys Central Indians vs Eves Realty Greerton, Smallbone Park; New World Te Puke vs Geyser City, Te Puke Domain; Element IMF Cadets vs Bond & Co Tauranga Boys' College, Tauranga Domain.
Points Table: Cadets 32, Mount Maunganui 26, Greerton 26, Tauranga Boys' College 22, Lake Taupō 20, Te Puke 13, Geyser City 6, Central Indians 4.
Versatile Tauranga Williams Cup 2020 Honours Board:
Tim Clarke (Tauranga Boys' College vs Geyser City), February 22: 143.
Nick Hendrie (Greerton vs Te Puke), February 29: 131no.
Drew Brierley (Lake Taupō vs Tauranga Boys College), February 8: 128.
Drew Brierley (Lake Taupō vs Central Indians), February 29: 124.
Ben Vyver (Tauranga Boys' College vs Central Indians), February 1: 112.
Sam Kershaw (Geyser City vs Lake Taupō), February 1: 101no.