Worcester will need to draw on all their battling instincts if they are to survive another nail-biting relegation fight at the foot of the Guinness Premiership.
With four rounds to go in this year's championship, four teams remain locked in a battle for survival, although mathematically Harlequins could also be drawn into the scrap if the Warriors, Leeds, Sale and Newcastle find some end-of-season form over the remaining weekends.
As it stands, basement club Worcester are trailing Leeds by three points, with Sale a further three points clear and one behind Newcastle, who have played 19 games to the other three sides' 18.
The form book would suggest that the Warriors are favourites for the drop, having lost five of their last six league matches. Yet of the four relegation-threatened clubs the Warriors have arguably the 'easiest' run in.
Three of their last four games are at Sixways, though not the potential season-decider with Leeds on April 25. But that match is preceded by home games with London Irish and Wasps, and followed by a home game with Gloucester on the final weekend of the season proper.
Leeds are away at Quins and London Irish before facing the Warriors, and their head coach Neil Back is hoping they can secure their Premiership status before travelling to Bath on the final weekend.
Picking up points on the road will be crucial to Leeds' chances, and they will be confident they can achieve that after winning three of their last four league matches.
Sale will give themselves some much-needed breathing space if they can secure a home win over Saracens on Friday evening, while their crucial clash with Newcastle at Edgeley Park on April 23 is sandwiched by home games against Bath and Harlequins.
The Falcons, meanwhile, welcome champions Leicester and in-form Wasps to Kingston Park either side of their trip to Sale, and may find their one-point advantage over the Sharks an insufficient buffer when you consider they have played one game more than their relegation rivals.
Furthermore, Newcastle face the prospect of three games in 12 days, starting with a European Challenge Cup quarter-final against Cardiff Blues this weekend, after which they face Leicester and then Sale.
Success against the Blues would add a further game to their schedule and severely test the Kingston Park squad. Worcester, Leeds and Sale have no such distraction and it will be interesting to see how Steve Bates rotates his squad for the challenges ahead.
Of course, Worcester have been here before and boss Mike Ruddock will be hoping this experience will prove the extra factor to carry them through.
The Warriors have finished in the bottom three in the last three seasons, and only a win over Saracens on the final weekend of 2006-7 saw them avoid the drop at the expense of Northampton.
However, there was no such end-of-season battle last year, or in 2007-8 when they placed 10th, because they finished well clear of relegated Bristol and Leeds, so perhaps too much is read into their experience of avoiding the drop.
Leeds have made no secret of the fact their season hinges on Premiership survival and, though they were the top flight new boys, they have been difficult opponents for most of the season and appear to be finding their best form when it matters most.
They will certainly fancy their chances against the Warriors at Headingley in a fixture that could well decide the make-up of next season's Premiership.
Remaining fixtures in relegation battle:
Worcester: London Irish (H) April 10; Wasps (H) April 17; Leeds (A) April 25; Gloucester (H) May 8.
Leeds: Harlequins (A) April 10; London Irish (A) April 18; Worcester (H) April 25; Bath (A) May 8.
Sale: Saracens (H) April 9; Bath (A) April 17; Newcastle (H) April 23; Harlequins (A) May 8.
Newcastle: Leicester (H) April 18; Sale (A) April 23; Wasps (H) May 8.
Rumour of the week: Stephen Jones to Leicester
Reports that the Scarlets, Wales and Lions fly-half is headed for Leicester may have been denied by the Tigers' management, but it takes on a new twist if a story in the Leicester Mercury proves correct. The Mercury has reported that Sam Vesty is due to join Lewis Moody at Bath next season, which could leave the Tigers light in the fly-half department. Of course, Toby Flood and Jeremy Staunton still remain at Welford Road, but is the latter of sufficient quality to allow the Tigers to compete for European and domestic honours next season? Jones would certainly improve their chances.
Prediction of the week: Dan Ward-Smith for England tour.
The New Zealand-born forward was all set to make his England debut when Bristol were flying high during the 2006-7 Premiership season. Former England coach Brian Ashton had named the then high-stepping number eight in his Six Nations squad before a serious knee injury cruelly intervened. A broken wrist further curtailed his international chances, but he has enjoyed a decent run since joining Wasps at the start of the season and has managed 24 games for the London club. Now 32, Ward-Smith may have lost a yard of pace but he has added another string to his bow by playing second row for Wasps. A spot in England's squad for the summer tour to Australia and New Zealand may not smack of forward thinking, but when you consider a couple of the locks who played during the Six Nations it may not be such a bad option.