The Golden Lions host the Sharks in Johannesburg on Saturday for the right to be crowned South Africa's provincial champions for 2011.
The Lions have been top of the table for most of the season and deserve their place in the final and will be worthy winners if they pull off a victory.
The Sharks however, after mixed results throughout the season, have hit form at the right time and the return of their Springboks from the World Cup have certainly boosted their chances of holding on to the title they won in 2010.
The Lions last won the Currie Cup in 1999 when they beat the Sharks 32-9.
The Sharks' returning Springboks' influence was evident when these same teams met in the final fixture of the competition two weeks ago in Durban.
On that occassion the Sharks won 53-9, albeit against a Lions side without several of their first-choice players and the final will defintely not be as one-sided as that match.
The Lions showed in their semi-final win over a star-studded Western Province side that they don't respect reputations and will not stick to what has worked for them throughout their campaign according to their coach John Mitchell.
"The set piece accuracy and your ability to create pressure in that area are crucial," he explained.
"The game hasn't changed at all and you had an example of that over the weekend in the World Cup final. The Sharks are a very good side and very good forward pack with a heap of test players.
"But we are just focusing on our own performance and clearly we have total confidence in our forward pack and team. Right at this moment you don't change a lot.
"All our work is done, so we we've just focused on being more accurate and bringing some of the attitude that is important at this time of the year."
Sharks captain Keegan Daniel believes his team has the ability to retain their title.
"A lot of us have played in finals while many Lions players have not, but then you could reverse that and say they have been together all year and we've had to bring in new guys," he said.
"I don't think that will make too much difference. We know what it is like to play in a final not having won it for so long and the hunger that we had that day and they will bring the same hunger, I'm sure.
"For us, it's about physically fronting up on the day, no matter who plays. You can't live on reputation because that's going to get you nowhere, you have to play as a team."
Players to watch:
For Golden Lions: Fly-half Elton Jantjies put in a fine performance against Western Province last week and will once again have to be at his best if the Lions want to win their first Currie Cup in 12 years. A precocious talent, Jantjies' all-round game has improved considerably under the watchful eye of Lions back-line coach, former All Blacks pivot Carlos Spencer. Expect him to shine on the big stage.
For Sharks: The Sharks will rely on Springbok flank Willem Alberts to put them on the front foot with his powerful surges as a ball carrier. Alberts is difficult to stop once he gets going and also has the ability to knock an opponent back with his aggressive tackling style.
Previous results (2011):
October 15: Sharks won 53-9 in Durban
August 27: Lions won 28-19 in Johannesburg
Previous finals between Golden Lions and Sharks:
1992: Golden Lions 13 Sharks 14 in Johannesburg
1993: Golden Lions 21 The Sharks 15 in Durban
1996: Golden Lions 15 The Sharks 33 in Johannesburg
1999: Golden Lions 32 The Sharks 9 in Durban
Head-to-head: The battle amongst the forwards, especially in the front-row will be crucial in this game's outcome. For the Sharks their Springbok front-row of Beast Mtawarira, and Jannie and Bismarck du Plessis are one of the strongest scrummaging units in world rugby and the Lions front-row of Pat Cilliers, Bandise Maku and CJ van der Linde, will have to be at their best if they want to set the platform for the rest of their team-mates to shine.
Prediction: This could be the closest final in recent years. Although the Sharks will be determined to hold on to their title, the Lions are hungrier for victory and should just edge out the Durban-based side. Lions by three points!
Golden Lions: 15 Jaco Taute, 14 Deon van Rensburg, 13 Doppies la Grange, 12 Alwyn Hollenbach, 11 Michael Killian, 10 Elton Jantjies, 9 Michael Bondesio, 8 Joshua Strauss (c), 7 Michael Rhodes, 6 Derick Minnie, 5 Franco van der Merwe, 4 Wikus van Heerden, 3 Patric Cilliers, 2 Bandise Maku, 1 CJ Van der Linde
Replacements: 16 Martin Bezuidenhout, 17 Jacobie Adriaanse/JC Janse van Rensburg, 18 Warren Whiteley, 19 Cobus Grobbelaar, 20 Butch James, 21 Dylan des Fountain, 22 James Kamana
Sharks: 15 Pat Lambie, 14 Odwa Ndungane, 13 Stefan Terblanche, 12 Marius Joubert, 11 JP Pietersen, 10 Frederic Michalak, 9 Conrad Hoffmann, 8 Ryan Kankowski, 7 Willem Alberts, 6 Keegan Daniel (c), 5 Ross Skeate, 4 Jean Deysel, 3 Jannie du Plessis, 2 Bismarck du Plessis, 1 Beast Mtawarira.
Replacements: 16 Craig Burden, 17 Eugene van Staden, 18 Alistair Hargreaves, 19 Marcell Coetzee, 20 Ross Cronje, 21 Adi Jacobs, 22 Lwazi Mvovo.
Date: Saturday, October 29
Venue: Coca-Cola Park, Johannesburg
Kick-off: 17:00 (15:00 GMT)
Referee: Mark Lawrence
Assistant referees: Stefan Breytenbach, Christie du Preez
Television match official: Johann Meuwesen
By Dave Skippers