History beckons for the Wellington Blaze in the Super Smash this afternoon, as they embark on a quest for a record-breaking fourth consecutive domestic Twenty20 title.
The Blaze take on the Canterbury Magicians at the Basin Reserve in Wellington, having ventured along the elimination final route on their way to the decider, defeating the Auckland Hearts by 35 runs on Thursday.
Now a chance emerges to cement their status as the greatest women's T20 side in New Zealand domestic history. But, despite the possibility of unmatched triumph, the Blaze are maintaining a simple outlook for today's contest.
"We just need to worry about winning the game; it's not about trying to go a four-peat... I think we sort of take things game by game and the team's been incredibly successful the last few seasons," captain Maddy Green says.
Green adds through their last three successful campaigns, they've learnt how to win these big games.
"We've got a lot of experience in our side and a lot of world class players like Sophie Devine and Amelia Kerr.
"I think T20 cricket when you know how to win, that really helps. Over the last three or four years our attack's been really dominant."
It is quality that one of her opposites notices as well.
"I think over the last three or four years they've really set the benchmark and they've given us a few hidings across the years as well… we're hoping we can pick up another one [win]," Magicians skipper Frankie Mackay says.
The Wellington Firebirds finishing top of the table in the men's competition means the capital hosts both deciders, indirectly handing the Blaze homefield advantage. But Mackay doesn't quite see it that way.
"We're pretty used to playing each other at home and away venues, you see a lot of the same people – it's a reasonably small world the women's cricket world, it's not too disconcerting and we also did beat them here last time we did play them."
The Blaze were the pacesetters early on in the competition before losing two of their final three matches. Their net run rate of 2.20, compared to 0.78 for the Magicians, offers insight into what they can produce on both sides of the ball.
Devine, Kerr and Green all rank in the top nine runscorers, while Devine has the best strike rate with 177.5. But it is the bowling unit that Mackay sees as the Blaze's biggest weapon.
"They're exceptionally consistent; they manage to bowl a lot of sides out, put a lot of teams under pressure and not a lot of teams score up around that 140-150 mark against them," she says.
The Blaze and Magicians split their regular season series, the most recent match a win for the latter by nine wickets.
The match gets underway at 12:10pm, while later in the afternoon it is the men's finals with the Firebirds and Kings – also both from Wellington and Canterbury – facing off at 4:10.
Like the women, the Wellington men are looking to retain the title, having won the 2020 competition.