Statewide sporting leagues in Tasmania haven't always had the smoothest of existences.
Travel, money, in-fighting, facilities and the staple Tassie ingredient of parochialism have all done their bit to torpedo such entities over the years.
Comparing the average Tassie state league to a marriage has always been closer to Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie than Goldie Hawn and Kurt Russell.
But occasionally the chemistry works and the result is almost enough to make observers feel it was all worthwhile.
Throw in the essential North-South rivalry factor and everyone's happy.
This year threatens to produce a perfect storm of state league outcomes, which must make Taylor Whitford some sort of Tasmanian George Clooney.
Two major football codes are building towards intriguing finishes in both genders while Tasmanian netball is in a league of its own, heading into its final round of the regular season with the genuine prospect of finishing in a three-way tie.
And in four of those five competitions, there's a North versus South factor threatening to turn the Central Midlands into a Game of Thrones-style battleground.
The Tasmanian Netball League is the statewide league by which all others should be judged.
Since 2006, the title has been won seven times by Southern sides and six by Northern, the last three grand finals have been North v South encounters and this year's semi-finalists will be two teams from Launceston and two from Hobart (well, Hobart and Kingston, close enough).
Both footy competitions went into the weekend with a North-South battle for top spot then daylight to a North-South tie for third.
Having met in the last two grand finals, North Launceston and Lauderdale are charging headlong towards another, with the Northern Bombers having met Glenorchy in the previous two before that for an impressive haul of four flags in five years.
Launceston and Glenorchy are in hot pursuit with the former's recent defeat of Lauderdale followed by Saturday's loss to lowly North Hobart demonstrating anything is possible in that competition.
In the six-team women's competition, Launceston and Glenorchy are elevated up to the top two positions - comfortably clear of Clarence and North - with the Blues still undefeated after 11 games.
The state men's soccer competition, known to its friends as NPL Tasmania, had come down to a classic two-horse race with reigning champions Devonport and Olympia locked together on 44 points going into their summit meeting on Saturday and South Hobart 11 points adrift.
That all changed when Strikers won 4-1, Olympia were charged with fielding an ineligible player earlier in the season and South stood to collect the points from that loss.
Tasmania's most geographically unbalanced statewide make-up is soccer's Women's Super League.
If you were to put pins in a map of Tasmania marking the teams' locations, four would be clustered together in Hobart, one would be just underneath in Kingston and the sixth would require a step ladder and long reach some 300 kilometres and a seven-hour round trip away in Ulverstone.
As Devonport Strikers have discovered in the men's comp, what the Reds have to put up with in travel they are rewarded for with a monopoly on the top-flight playing talent from an entire region of the state.
Last season Ulverstone cruised to the title without losing a game but this season they sit third as Olympia and Hobart Zebras compete for top spot.
Football Tasmania has attempted to redress the geographical imbalance by discussing the idea of a composite Launceston team along the lines of cricket's Greater Northern Raiders to fill the void left by Launceston City's withdrawal.
Between City, Launceston United, Riverside, North Launceston Eagles and Northern Rangers, the talent is certainly sufficient, but the venture's success would be determined by logistics and commitment.
Other Tasmanian sports - such as basketball and rugby - have dabbled in statewide leagues while the likes of hockey and cricket have largely kept opposite ends of the state apart.
But if this winter's developments are anything to go by, statewide competition is in serious danger of actually uniting rather than dividing Tasmanian sport.
TNL top 4
- TEAM P W L Pts %
- Hawks 18 15 3 30 141.04
- Arrows 17 14 3 28 144.93
- Cavaliers 17 14 3 28 127.89
- Kingston 17 7 10 14 96.24
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