Kyneton coach Luke Beattie expects the challenge of playing a finals contender to bring to the best out of his side.
The Tigers head into this Saturday's trip to Golden Square on the back of five-straight wins.
The past two wins have been against bottom sides Maryborough and Castlemaine. They were matches Beattie admitted his side struggled to get up for mentally.
He said the prospect of playing a big game against a power club like Golden Square was a challenge his side relished.
"The last two quarters of the Maryborough game and three of the four quarters against Castlemaine have got us back to that better style of football that we know we can play.
"Golden Square's oval is one we usually play well at because we've had relatively good success there over the last couple of years.
"Our best football is against the better teams because it seems we struggle mentally against the lower-ranked teams.
"We need to get our head around the fact we need to play football and not the opposition.
"Against Castlemaine we started to get the maturity in the group in that we weren't hung up on the fact we were playing Castlemaine.
“They were hung up on the fact that we were out there to play the style of football that we'd been working hard on over the past three or four weeks."
Despite missing several key players in recent weeks, the Tigers have surged into third spot on the BFNL ladder. Wins against Eaglehawk and Sandhurst announced the Tigers as a genuine top three contender.
They could regain several of those missing key players this week.
"We're starting to get closer to our true list,'' Beattie said.
"Max O'Sullivan, Dan Davie, Gareth Bowes, Michael Clancey and Fintan Brazil should be all available for the seniors and Tommy O'Sullivan will come back through the reserves.
"Whether we bring them all back into the seniors this week, I'm not sure."
While the Tigers are flying, Golden Square is coming off two-straight defeats and another loss on Saturday would put the Dogs two-and-a-half games behind the third-placed Kyneton at the halfway mark of the season.
The Bulldogs haven't lost three games in a row since rounds six to eight in 2007.
The corresponding game last year at Wade Street was a low-scoring draw.