The Whanganui High School boys 1st X1 hockey team head into this evening's Manawatu Secondary Schools Division 1 final as favourites over Feilding High School.

During round robin play this season, the strong WHS side drew with Feilding before beating them 2-nil and tonight they will be hunting a three-peat in the Manawatu competition.

Named Senior Team of the Year at the Whanganui High School sports awards last season, the side includes New Zealand under-18 player Patrick Madder.

Coming off winning the 2017 Manawatu Secondary School Division 1 competition, the team knew they could be strong contenders for the trophy again in 2018. The boys had a consistent season, playing 23 games.

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They drew two and won 21. They scored 122 goals and only had 12 scored against them, finishing the competition winning the Manawatu grade, making them back-to-back champs.

The team then went on to perform well at the Founders Cup in Palmerston North over winter tournament week winning the Tier 2 grade, which has given them the opportunity to play at Rankin Cup (Tier 1) in Christchurch in a fortnight.

Team manager Darrell Hoskin, however, was in no doubt Feilding would be tough and could certainly not be considered pushovers.

"Feilding High School has put a lot into the sports teams, including hockey. Their hockey and rugby sides are touring Japan later this year, so they will be hungry," Hoskin said.

"We do have a very strong side, though and will be playing to win."