No side would be envious of Trentham’s task this weekend, as it is set to do battle with Carisbrook for a place in the 2019 grand final.
As premiers for the last two seasons and having made the grand final every year since 2014, the Redbacks head into the weekend as clear favourites, regardless of opponent.
The Saints have had an upwards trajectory for several years now, making finals every year since season 2016 when they placed eighth on the ladder, seventh in 2017 and fifth in 2018, before a two- loss home and away season this year saw them claim second.
While a shattering 46-point loss to Natte Bealiba in qualifying finals would’ve knocked their confidence for six, the Saints went to work last weekend against Harcourt, determined to get through to preliminary finals off the back of their most successful season in years.
Trentham will be well aware of its long standing premiership drought, with the side claiming its most recent flag in 1994 and last appearing in a grand final in 1996 — adding even more pressure to an already nerve-racking ordeal.
For more on this story see Page 30 of The Advertiser, Friday, September 6