The time for winning is now, with finals very much in sight.
The Crocs are already there, playing in the second semi-final this Saturday morning at Rathmines, Their clash with the Hawthorn Spartans commences at 9:20. An early start, and hopefully a fast start.
The Women have completed their inaugural season, and while missing the finals, showed remarkable improvement over the year. They will be better still next year with a seaon under their collective belts.
For the other six Xaverian teams, there is still some work to be done to secure spots after the R18 cut.
Currently, Junior McDonald's charges are the only active Xavs' team still outside the top four. Here is the current ladder:
With just four games remaining, it looks as if St Kevin's (currently 52pp) will play Collegians (44pp) in the second semi-final. At a minimum, Kevs should win three of their four, while Collegians should win at least two more, which will be enough to hold second spot unless Uni Blues win all four.
Blues is half-a-game clear in third spot and a game and a half off second position, but has two trips to the Bay and plays fellow contenders St Kevin's and De La under the spires. They should win three of their four, but not one of these will be a gimme.
De La Salle holds fourth spot from Xavs by half a game. If it wins all four, it will play finals. Games away at the Trott and Uni Blues could upset those plans.
Should Old Xavs win all four, the Red 'n' Blacks should play finals. It could come down to the R18 clash with Collegians, where a win might see the Xavs in at the expense of either Blues or De La Salle, who play each other in R18. If the Xavs win just three of their four remaining games, they will rely on either De La dropping two (Colls, Blues?) or Blues dropping three,
It's going to be tight, as none of Xavs' four games are a sure thing. Winning this week and then safely negotiating clashes with two teams fighting relegation will set them up for a big clash with the Lions.
The Brownies are in second spot. A win against OMs will secure their spot in the finals and likely guarantee a second semi-final berth. Uni Blues sit in their very familiar first position on the ladder.
Both play in the Premier Thirds competition and both are well positioned for the run home. The U23s (Old Xaverians Red) is assured of a finals' berth, while a win to the Menages (Old Xaverians Black) tomorrow will likely seal their spot too.
The bigger question is the double chance.
The Reds should dominate the run home, but with neither St Kevin's team likely to lose before the finals, it probably means the Blacks will saddle up in the first semi-final against the Greens.
With just three games left on the home and away card, the U19 Premier team has secured a finals' berth. The big question is whether it can steal second spot and grab the double chance.
It will start favourite against Bernards and Parkdale, but the R18 clash is with St Kevin's, who play Beaumaris in R17. De La also must play top team Beaumaris.
The odds are with the status quo. But should Kevs drop two, De La one and Xavs run the table, pack your bags for the second semi.
A win on the weekend will send the Rs to the finals. The likelihood is that Pat Allan's boys will finish in third spot, but go into the finals full of confidence.