It's the biggest decision of the Warriors' pre-season, but coach Stephen Kearney admits he is no closer to making the call between Kodi Nikorima and Chanel Harris-Tavita.
Given the lack of recruitment, most of the combinations at the club are already established, though a lot of improvement is needed after a poor 2019 season.
But fixing on a playmaker to partner Blake Green will be crucial, as the spine simply has to function better this year.
Green had an up and down campaign last season, and clearly missed Shaun Johnson, but has been given the nod in the halfback role, for his experience and game management, with Nikorima or Harris Tavita battling for the number six role.
The two are currently alternating in their roles — Harris-Tavita trained with the 'A' team on Wednesday as Nikorima ran with the reserves — and Kearney's mind is far from made up.
"I'm going to say that it's an open position," said Kearney. "[It's like] the old saying – the best man is going to get the role. [That's also] taking into account the fit for the team, who is going to best fit the team."
The situation illustrates how far Harris-Tavita (20) has come.
Nikorima was brought in last May, as a replacement for Johnson, and instantly drafted into the side.
He has 100 NRL matches to his name (though many in a utility role) as well as 15 tests for the Kiwis and has played in three finals series, with one playoff run climaxing in a grand final (2015).
But the 25-year-old isn't a lock for the five eighth spot, simply because Harris-Tavita was one of the few obvious positives from last year, with his running game, kicking prowess and general verve, exemplified in the late season win over Manly at Mt Smart.
His rate of improvement over the season was impressive, and while Nikorima is probably the favourite, Harris-Tavita, who featured in 13 games last year, could go close.
His wrist surgery was successful, albeit with a longer than expected recovery, and Kearney indicated he will leave his final decision until the last possible moment.
"We have a couple of trials to get through," said Kearney. "It's very similar circumstances to what happened last year [when] we took them up to Whangarei. I thought Kegs (Adam Keighran) had a good game and he got the nod.
"[But now] I couldn't say; they are competing really hard against each other at training. One week I'm saying it's Chanel and the next week it's Kodi. That's a good position to be in."
Hookers Karl Lawton and Wayde Egan took part in their first contact sessions on Wednesday, after both had shoulder reconstructions during the off season, and centre Gerard Beale is also tracking ahead of schedule in his comeback from a nasty knee cap injury.
Kearney is yet to finalise his squad for the NRL Nines in Perth next weekend, though confirmed that captain Roger Tuivasa-Sheck wouldn't be part of it.
"I don't think I'll be wanting to send Roger," said Kearney. "Possibly if it was at Eden Park I might but not when it is six hours on the plane and you have to get him back. But we'll see."
The Warriors pre-season will conclude with trials on February 22 (vs Storm, Palmerston North) and March 1 (vs Tigers, Rotorua). They open their NRL campaign on March 14 in Newcastle.