They may only be minor semi-finalists but, according to Collingwood coach Kristy Keppich-Birrell, the red-hot Queensland Firebirds are the team best primed for the Super Netball championship.
Keppich-Birrell had no hesitation in declaring the Firebirds favourites for the title after her Magpies were given a last-round 76-44 hiding at the Brisbane Entertainment Centre on Saturday.
While minor premiers GWS Giants and West Coast Fever will contest next week's major semi-final and have earned most attention by finishing in the top two, the Queenslanders carry the best form into the play-offs.
With their backs to the wall to make the finals a month ago, the Firebirds are on a four-match winning streak which has included the scalps of the Giants and Fever.
"They are the team that have improved the most over the season," Keppich-Birrell said.
"I think most people would think the Fever are the team to beat but I think the Firebirds are the ones who have the cattle and the know-how of how to beat them so they are my tip.
"They've had a good run to finals against really good teams and (Saturday) they didn't just stop, they kept going."
Normally understated, Firebirds coach Roselee Jencke described her side's performance in the 32-goal rout - their biggest of the season - as "sublime at times".
They showed they were championship material at both ends of the court with goal defence Kim Jenner matching Laura Geitz's smarts and desperation while attacking pair Romelda Aitken and Gretel Tippett combined brilliantly.
The Queenslanders' form was evident from the outset against Collingwood - putting a downer on retiring trio Sharni Layton, Erin Bell and Shae Brown's last game - by ripping out a 21-9 first-quarter trouncing.
"They came out firing and they blew us out of the water in the first five minutes and it is pretty hard to come back from something like that," Keppich-Birrell said.
Diamonds and Firebirds midcourter Gabi Simpson said they had no concerns about upsetting the top two and winning the title away from home.
"We know it is possible, we have done it before and we've got good momentum and confidence," she said.