Before the season, most fans would not have looked at this fixture between Leeds and Hull KR in the final round and thought much of it.
The Rhinos were always expected to be in the play-off hunt but most were tipping the Robins for relegation rather than finals football.
But, Hull KR have shocked the rugby league world with an outstanding campaign adorned by a superb style of rugby which has left them just one win away from the play-offs.
The same is true of the Rhinos. The eight-time Super League Champions also stand one win away from a play-off place turning Friday’s game at Headingley into a must win encounter for both sides.
In essence, it could be considered an extra play-off match because – unless Castleford lose the night before – the winner will take a step forward to the Grand Final whilst ending their opponents’ campaign. It is indeed a knockout game.
In many ways it’s the biggest game of the season so far, not just for the two teams involved but in the season as a whole as we get to the business end of the year. No game between the Rhinos and the Robins has had such magnitude since their meeting in the 2015 Challenge Cup Final but this one stands to be much more competitive as both teams stand a real chance of playing play-off rugby this year.
The only thing this contest needs to confirm its status as a seismic clash is a huge crowd and it seems Headingley will host one of the biggest crowds of the season.
It’s well-documented just how well attended Leeds games are with the club boasting the highest attendance in the league even during their difficult years in 2018 and 2019. So, expect plenty of Leeds fans to pile into the South Stand.
But their loud voices will be rivalled by those from Hull KR. The Robins have already sold over a thousand tickets for Friday’s games and, with their special offer of £1 for travel to Headingley, that’ll only increase in the next few days. So, if you want tickets get them as fast as you can.
3 DAYS TO GO and over 1000 tickets sold!!
It's our final push for the play-offs, make sure you're there this Friday to cheer the boys on! Don't forget coach travel is £1 for members❤️🤍
— Hull KR (@hullkrofficial) September 14, 2021
All of this means it promises to be one of the biggest games of the season with one of the best atmospheres we’ve seen in a long time. It’s just what we all need after the 18 months we’ve had.