The Griffith Blacks will face their toughest test of the season when they return to Exies Oval this weekend to take on Waratahs on Saturday afternoon.
Coach Craig Morriss isn't shying away from the challenge facing his side this weekend.
"It will be the test of all test," he said.
"They are the pinnacle of the competition and have been for a couple of seasons now.
"We went close in Wagga but will be looking to take that one step further. We have come a long way since then."
The Blacks showed their fighting spirit last weekend in Albury as a try in the final minutes to take a 31-24 win, but the side isn't getting too carried away.
"We talked about the performance at training on Tuesday," he said.
"We know that there is still work to be done, and we aren't getting carried away with the result.
"I think the weekend shows how far the club as come in the last 18 months."
Morriss was happy to see his side fight until the end of the match against the Steamers but said there had been a flipside.
"We need to make sure we are starting well because we have been a bit slow in recent weeks," he said.
"They (Waratahs) are relentless, and they won't give you space. If we have one lapse, they will make us pay."
The Blacks do have a couple of players heading into the clash under injury clouds, but Morriss is hopeful of getting a full-strength side on the park.
"Kieren (McNabb) is still a bit tender after picking up a knock to the ribs last weekend, and Sai Ahomana is still only 50/50 after not playing last week and only playing five minutes against Wagga City," he said.
"Everyone is carrying little niggles, but that would be a similar story for most teams in the competition."
With a period of ill-discipline seeing the side pick up two yellow cards and a red, Morriss knows improvements need to be made in that area.
"We have been working on our defence," he said
"We can't afford to be down players, so we have been working on our tackling to prevent a repeat of last weekend.
"The guys are enthusiastic. They have been taking the reigns, and they know where they need to improve.
"There have been some guys who have really stepped up. We are watching guys who were just turning up and going through the motions to now seeing them taking leadership roles within the club and helping out the lower grades."
The action at Exies Oval will get underway with the third grade getting underway at 12pm while the first-grade clash starts at 3.20pm.
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