Doncaster Knights will find themselves top of the Championship table on Boxing Day evening if they can pick up bonus win over fifth-placed Nottingham at Castle Park (2.30pm).
With leaders Bristol not in action until Sunday when they entertain London Welsh, Knights will not lack incentive going into the final game of 2015 and their first of the second half of the season.
Second-placed Knights go into the game unbeaten in their last nine league and cup games and looking to complete a double over the Green and Whites, having won 36-30 at The Bay in September.
“They lost their first three league games but they’ve won six of their eight league games since then and are obviously playing better than when we last played them,” said Knights’ boss Clive Griffiths.
They travel up the A1, however, on the back of successive B&I Cup Pool Four defeats against London Welsh and have yet to win in four starts. But they will not lack confidence on a ground where they have enjoyed success in recent seasons and against a side they did the double over in 2014-15.
“It’s going to be a real crunch game and we’ll come under more pressure from their catch and drive tactics than we’ve done in recent games. We’ll have to stand up to that,” added Griffiths.
“But let’s not big them up too much; I’m sure they’ll be worried about us because we are playing well and we’ve got some good players.
“So much so that it has been something of a selection headache picking the team because I judge players on their performances in not only the Championship, but also in the B&I Cup.”