The former champions have struggled to stamp their mark in the past couple of seasons and are ready to redeem themselves this year.
Turangi leads the competition on 20 points with five wins and a loss after round seven competition.
But the Ioane Tangimetua-skippered side whose only loss this year is to defending champions Tupapa, is set for a tough battle when it plays Rehab Titans tomorrow in the feature match of round eight.
“We spent the last three to four years trying to develop our squad. We have a good mix of players with three under-17s as well,” Ioane said.
“We had a better start this year and we want to keep building on that. Titikaveka Titans will be a tough game for us but we will do our best to maintain our standings.”
Turangi, with the likes of batsmen Tereinga Maoate and Elia Tangimetua, young fielder Tou Tika and right-hand medium bowler Tiri Toa, will head into this weekend’s clash as the favourites.
Titans, which have been finishing second to Tupapa in the past couple of season, look equally appealing with four wins and two losses on 16 points.
Meanwhile, with two more rounds of matches remaining, seven teams are in the race for the top four playoffs.
Turangi collected another four points last weekend after opponents Takuvaine failed to provide a venue.
Tupapa slipped a spot down after a narrow loss to Arorangi to join Titans and Matavera which registered wins over Avana and Tupapa II, respectively, on 16 points.
Nikao’s historic win over Muri and Arorangi’s win over Tupapa has ensured both sides have kept themselves in contention for the top four.
However, Cook Islands Cricket chief executive officer Alister Stevic said there was no easy road for the two teams, who would need victories in their remaining two matches to remain in contention.
“They will also have to hope that one of Tupapa, Titans or Matavera lose at least one of their remaining matches,” Stevic said.
“Muri, Avana and Takuvaine have a mountain to climb, however, the incentive to reach the top four or qualify as high as possible to gain automatic entry to the bottom six semi-finals should spur them on.
“Tupapa II have played good cricket this season and have been unfortunate not to have come away with a win. They will be looking to change that when they meet eighth-placed Muri at Nukupure Park on Saturday.”
In other men’s matches, Matavera will be eyeing for a win over Nikao, Tupapa will want to keep within reach of top of the table with a win over Takuvaine at the Valley while both Avana and Arorangi will want to keep their top four hopes alive when they meet at Raemaru Park.
The men’s matches start at 3.15pm. For the points table, refer to the front page.