After victory over Wigan Warriors on Thursday night Leeds Rhinos are looking ominous once again as the Super League playoffs draw closer. Can they beat Huddersfield Giants, Warrington Wolves and Warriors to the coveted title?
Leeds Rhinos take third spot
In hindsight Leeds Rhinos' impressive 20-6 victory over Wigan Warriors at the DW Stadium will probably suit both teams to some extent. While Wigan will rue a third successive home defeat and boss Shaun Wane had to face question's over the side's slump in form, Warriors will now avoid the fearsome Warrington Wolves in the playoffs.
They will have to face table-topping Huddersfield Giants however, and performances must improve as the team struggles without the influential Sean O'Loughlin.
Leeds meanwhile, have hit a run of good form at exactly the correct time and matches similar bouts of brilliance in the past two years that saw them go on to take the Super League Grand Final. They will line up against Warrington Wolves in the playoffs buoyed by the excellent form and the return of Jamie Jones-Buchanan after two months on the sidelines.
Leeds scored through Ben Jones-Bishop, Carl Ablett, Joel Moon and Kallum Watkins in this game with only a Pat Richards try in the first half providing some resistance from Wigan, who are playing like a Challenge Cup may be enough to consider this a successful season.
Hull FC versus St Helens
The most exciting tie of the weekend comes on Friday night when losing Challenge Cup finalists Hull FC, fresh off the back of a revenge victory over Wigan, welcome St Helens to the KC Stadium in a tie between two teams who will be entering the playoff places at the end of the season.
Hull will welcome back New Zealand hooker Aaron Heremaia into the squad but miss three with injury including Ben Crooks, Andy Lynch and the captain Gareth Ellis.
St Helens are looking strong with only Joe Greenwood dropping out of the squad to be replaced by the more experienced England hooker Joe Roby after eight weeks on the sidelines.
While both teams have qualified for the playoffs, Hull are currently a single place behind St Helens in sixth and can move ahead of them with victory in the season's final game.
Catalan Dragons versus Warrington Wolves
The loser of the Hull FC and St Helens game could be leapfrogged by French side Catalan Dragons at the final stage of the season. However, that will only happen if Dragons can defeat second-place Warrington Wolves on Sunday.
Wolves have some good news to celebrate this week after announcing winger Kevin Penny will return to the club next season on a 12 month contract. The 25-year-old will join from Swinton Lions after originally being released three years ago to sign for Wakefield Trinity Wildcats.
Boss Tony Smith has seen enough to bring the academy product back next season to give the squad some more options in attack.
Salford sign eight
Speaking of options, Salford are celebrating relaunching as the Salford Red Devils - a name the club held long before Manchester United used it - instead of the Salford City Reds. Owner Dr Marwen Koukash believes it is a team more befitting of a Super League side and promptly announced the signing of his eighth player for next year.
Castleford Tiger's star Rangi Chase has decided to don the Red Devils' shirt next year, where he will join Gareth Hock, Tony Puletua, Tim Smith, Tommy Lee, Jake Mullaney, Jason Walton and Greg Johnson in the all-new squad. Amazingly, the club has already agreed deals for Adrian Morley, Junior Sa'u, Francis Meli and Steve Rapira before the announcement this week.
Super League shield winners Huddersfield Giants will travel to Bradford Bulls in their final game of what has proved to be an incredibly successful season. Bulls have no chance of reaching the playoffs but will be playing for Yorkshire pride in their final game of the season.
Salford City Reds will play Widnes Vikings, Hull KR will take on London Broncos and Wakefield Wildcats will welcome Castleford Tigers in the league's other games.