Wests Tigers players say the parochial home crowd helped drag them over the line in their last match at Leichhardt Oval and are hoping for another dose of the same in a must-win final-round clash against the Canberra Raiders this Sunday.
That 26-14 win over reigning premiers North Queensland back in Round 22 was arguably the joint-venture's most impressive win of the season.
They face a nervous wait to see if the Titans can beat the Cowboys on Saturday night to end the Wests Tigers' finals hopes before Sunday's 2pm kick off but if the Cowboys win,
Jason Taylor's men will be looking for another packed Leichhardt Hill to boost their chances against the in-form Green Machine.
"Hopefully we get a big crowd like the one a couple of weeks ago against the Cowboys. I think that crowd really brought the boys home so we're pumped to play at Leichhardt," halfback Luke Brooks said this week. "The boys always lift for games at Leichhardt, especially with a big crowd there and a lot of people cheering us on, it'd be good."
That home crowd didn't quite get the job done for them last time the Raiders came to visit; in Round 7 last year the home team shot out to a 22-0 lead before the Green Machine came roaring back with 30 unanswered points.
Brooks admitted that game still played on his mind – as did the 60-6 thrashing the Wests Tigers suffered in Canberra in Round 8 this year.
"I was actually thinking about that game this morning (Wednesday morning) when I woke up but that's a different year and a different team," Brooks said.
And he added the thrashing earlier this year was "still there" as well – though he insisted the Tigers have improved out of sight since then.
"It's still there. I still think about it a bit. We've got a chance now to make amends for that game and for that poor performance but we're a different team now," he said.
"We're a lot better than we were back then so hopefully we can turn it around.
"I think we've found the way we want to play.
"With Elijah Taylor coming he's sort of helped us find the footy we want to play and over the past two months we've started doing that and I think we've been better for it."
Brooks admitted the team had got "pretty lucky" since a big 40-10 loss to Penrith a fortnight ago looked to have ended their season, with other results going their way coupled with their own impressive last-start win over the Warriors keeping them in contention.
"After the Penrith game most people thought we were no chance and we thought it would be tough to make it but some results have fallen our way and we've found ourselves in a spot to make the eight, so if one more result goes our way we've got to beat the Raiders," he said.
"It will be an interesting weekend."