Brisbane and the Warriors will square off in round three of the NRL Holden Women's Premiership on Friday night at AAMI Park with the result set to have a bearing on grand final calculations for all four sides in the competition.
The Broncos have all but booked their place in the inaugural NRLW grand final following back-to-back wins with their opponent to be determined after this weekend's results.
Brisbane can hurt the Warriors' grand final chances with a victory on Friday with for-and-against to play a major part in the final make-up of the decider across both games.
Paul Dyer's side is easily the most dangerous team in 2018 and are now backed as heavy favourites to take out the title, while the Warriors will be looking to bounce back following a disappointing 22-10 loss to the Dragons last week.
Match: Broncos v Warriors
Round 3 -
Venue: AAMI Park, Melbourne
Key match-up: Rona Peters v Hilda Mariu. They're in different positions but keep an eye out on a wide-running Mariu as she looks to spot her sister Peters in the defensive line. It will mark the first time the pair have ever played each other a top grade level and there will be no love lost between the siblings.
For the Broncos to win: They need to keep at the basics and that should get them to victory. Complacency isn't something you'd expect in a very short competition but can happen to any team. The Broncos have enough strike across the paddock, as long as it doesn't go to their heads.
For the Warriors to win: They need more in attack. Having scored 10 points in each of their first two games, the Warriors have one win and one loss to their name after showing excellent defence against the Roosters and in the second half against the Dragons. If they can get off to a good start in attack, they can rely on that defence to get them home.
And another thing: In a full-strength Broncos side there are at least six players with a Kiwi Ferns background, bringing an added level of spice to the encounter. The Broncos identified New Zealand talent early and were able to land big names Teuila Fotu-Moala and Maitua Feterika this season to highlight their aggressive and successful recruitment plan.
Brisbane Broncos v New Zealand Warriors, Friday 5.15pm at AAMI Park
Match: Broncos v Warriors
Round 3 -
Fullback for Broncos is number 1 Chelsea BakerFullback for Warriors is number 1 Apii Nicholls
Winger for Broncos is number 2 Julia RobinsonWinger for Warriors is number 2 Langi Veainu
Centre for Broncos is number 3 Kody HouseCentre for Warriors is number 3 Shontelle Woodman
Centre for Broncos is number 4 Amber PilleyCentre for Warriors is number 14 Sarina Clark
Winger for Broncos is number 5 Karley Te KawaWinger for Warriors is number 5 Hilda Mariu
Five-Eighth for Broncos is number 6 Kimiora NatiFive-Eighth for Warriors is number 6 Laura Mariu
Halfback for Broncos is number 7 Ali BrigginshawHalfback for Warriors is number 7 Georgia Hale
Prop for Broncos is number 8 Heather BallingerProp for Warriors is number 10 Aieshaleigh Smalley
Hooker for Broncos is number 9 Brittany BreayleyHooker for Warriors is number 9 Krystal Rota
Prop for Broncos is number 10 Steph HancockProp for Warriors is number 11 Tanika-Jazz Noble
2nd Row for Broncos is number 11 Teuila Fotu-Moala2nd Row for Warriors is number 4 Onjeurlina Leiataua
2nd Row for Broncos is number 12 Maitua Feterika2nd Row for Warriors is number 12 Alice Vailea
Lock for Broncos is number 13 Rona PetersLock for Warriors is number 13 Luisa Gago
Interchange for Broncos is number 14 Lavinia GouldInterchange for Warriors is number 15 Lorina Papali'i
Interchange for Broncos is number 15 Chelsea LenarduzziInterchange for Warriors is number 18 Masuisuimatamaalii Tauaua-Pauaraisa
Interchange for Broncos is number 16 Tallisha HardenInterchange for Warriors is number 20 Raquel Anderson-Pitman
Interchange for Broncos is number 17 Ngatokotoru ArakuaInterchange for Warriors is number 24 Va'anessa Molia-Fraser
- Referee: Peter Gough
- Referee: Jake Sutherland
- Touch Judge: Wyatt Raymond
- Touch Judge: Daniel Schwass
- Video Referee: Bryan Norrie
- Senior Review Official: Henry Perenara
Broncos: The Broncos have no serious injury concerns and are expected to stick with the squad named earlier in the week. Kody House replaces the injured Meg Ward in the centres, Stephanie Hancock starts at prop, Chelsea Lenarduzzi moves to the bench and Tallisha Harden replaces Maraiah Storch on the interchange. Storch and Lilieta Maumau were cut an hour prior to kick-off, while Amelia Kuk and Taylor Mapusua were dropped on Thursday.
Warriors: Once again, the Warriors have made a host of changes to the team named on Tuesday. Sarina Clark (No.14) moves into the centres from the interchange bench, with Crystal Tamarua (No.8) out of the squad. Tanika Noble-Bell and Onjeurlina Leiataua have both moved to new positions, while Racquel Anderson and Va'nessa Molia-Fraser have been promoted to the bench. Kahurangi Peters was cut an hour before kick-off, while Tamarua and Amber Kani were omitted 24 hours out from game time.
Tarsha Gale's prediction: The Warriors performance last week showed signs of fatigue and brings their overall fitness into question. Their strength is in their defence and if they can get in front of the Broncos, they may be able to defend it.
In saying that the Broncos are a classy team, and I can't see them losing this one. Even with the Meg Ward out injured, Kody House is an impressive replacement and definitely one to watch. The Broncos have all but cemented their position in the grand final and so will not have to resort to any risky plays. Captain Ali Brigginshaw will again lead her team to victory with intelligent play and sticking to the basics. Broncos by 12