BENDIGO Spirit coach Simon Pritchard believes WNBL finals rivals will be hard pressed stopping the Townsville Fire from adding a second consecutive championship.
The Fire host the Perth Lynx this Sunday, with the winner advancing to the best of three grand final series. The loser will play the winner of this Saturday's cut-throat elimination final between the Dandenong Rangers and South East Queensland Stars in a preliminary final encounter.
Pritchard, who signed on as Spirit coach for a further three years this week, said Townsville had earned the right to be favourities.
"Townsville are very tough to beat in Townsville, even if Perth did beat them in Perth last weekend," he said. "Perth must be around the mark, but I'd give Townsville the edge simply because they are at home."
The Spirit were the only team to beat the Fire twice this season in Townsville.