It has taken until the 14th round of the season but the top two teams in Super Rugby are finally about to do battle.

Chiefs coach Dave Rennie knows it's an encounter fans are salivating about and now his job is to ensure the Hurricanes' mouth-watering form comes to a crashing halt. Because if the competition leaders win Saturday night's clash in Wellington, a margin that stands at 10 points will become insurmountable for the Chiefs.

"It's certainly a game that a lot of people have been salivating about," Rennie said. "It's a massive game for both sides. If they win then they probably seal the conference, if we win we can haul them back in. It makes for a pretty good finish."

To retain the possibility of a close finish the Chiefs must restrict the Hurricanes' star-studded attack, a task with which many sides have struggled this season.


And it's a task that will require a three-pronged approach - kicking into space, reducing errors in attack and preventing penalties - with 24 of the Hurricanes' 38 tries this season coming from kick returns (seven), turnovers (eight) and lineouts (nine).

"If we're going to kick, we'll need to find grass and chase well, and when we've got the pill we're going to need to look after it," Rennie said. "A big chunk of their tries came from turnover pill or counter-attacks. If they get in behind you, they've got guys coming from everywhere. They're very strong in that area."

Tim Nanai-Williams is doubtful for the Chiefs after suffering a concussion playing for the Samoan sevens team at the recent round in Glasgow, while bumps and bruises left a couple of question marks ahead of the team naming tomorrow.

One who will be absent is Brodie Retallick, with the lock set to shake off his shoulder injury for next weekend's clash with the Bulls, while Rennie was revealing nothing about the identity of the next player to get a chance to replace Aaron Cruden.

First Marty McKenzie and then Andrew Horrell were handed starts after Cruden was sidelined and, with neither seizing a stranglehold on the No 10 jersey, it could be the turn of Damian McKenzie.

James Lowe is available, having had one of his three yellow cards rescinded during a date with the judiciary, although injury may deny the wing a showdown with Julian Savea and Cory Jane.