Women's Provincial Championship tight at the top     05 Oct 2012

However, leading points scorer Emma Jensen says winning the competition is far from a done deal.

"We're half way through the championship and seeing some strong performances from the likes of Otago, Canterbury, and Waikato.

"More than ever the competition is wide open and proving to be a great advertisement for the woman's game."

Jensen says the Auckland team bears little resemblance to the 2011 winning side with 11 or 12 new caps, including some international influence with Jade Le Pesq from France and Jo O'Sullivan from Ireland.

"Across all positions we have a range of exciting talent on show, and I am relishing playing behind a really strong forward pack."

Jensen says she hopes the strong competition will ensure the Black Ferns squad heading to England later this year will be in a good position to avenge last year's series defeat.

"November's tour to England provides added incentive for the players. We're certainly going to be going into the series determined to put on a much better performance than last year."