A shock loss in the opening match of last year's three-game Nines series against the Jillaroos has the Kiwi Ferns more focused this time around.
For three young New Zealand Warriors props an already special week in the lead-up to the 2017 Downer NRL Auckland Nines has been made that much better.
Seasoned campaigners Kyle Turner and Dave Tyrrell are confident the Rabbitohs can handle the loss of star playmaker Adam Reynolds at the Auckland Nines.
This time last year Bevan French was a relatively unknown outside back touted for his blistering speed and ability to find the try line.
The NRL Nines have traditionally provided untested rookies with a platform to make a name for themselves, here are nine players you should keep an eye out for.
Gold Coast captain-in-waiting Ryan James believes that the birth of a daughter at Christmas has brought out a different side to superstar fullback Jarryd Hayne.
NRL boss Todd Greenberg has guaranteed the NRL Auckland Nines is here to stay, despite speculation next year's tournament could be the last.
One of the most exciting weekends on the NRL calendar is here again. The NRL.com writers have their say on which teams will perform and the players to watch.
Dragons forward Tyson Frizell has been omitted from the Red V's Auckland Nines squad, with Jacob Host added and Jack de Belin and Tariq Sims to lead the side.
The disappointment of missing last year's Nines series against the Kiwi Ferns drove Jillaroo Caitlin Moran to achieve national selection.