Ahead of the Christmas break, Sundowns had looked like they were about to pull well clear of the chasing pack after four consecutive wins.
But they lost their final match of the year, 0-1 against Cape Town City, which means that their lead at the top of the table, over Benni McCarthy’s second-placed City side, is only four points.
The Brazilians have added some additional firepower to their side with the signing of Aubrey Ngoma from Cape Town City, a long-time target of head coach Pitso Mosimane.
The 2016 African champions will, however, be wary of a former player of theirs, Polokwane City striker Rodney Ramagalela, who scored twice in a 2-1 win for Rise and Shine in the first round encounter in August.
And Sundowns keeper Denis Onyango is certainly aware of the threat Ramagalela brings.
“He is full of energy and he likes playing against Sundowns. Even when he was at Arrows he loved playing against Sundowns,” he told KickOff.
“We must cut the supply because if he does not have the ball he is not so dangerous. Sometimes it’s difficult to terminate all the supply, but we need to defend well.”
Apart from Ramagalela, the home side could also be set to unleash newly signed marksman Dominic Chungwa, top scorer in the Zimbabwean league last season.
Neither team has any suspensions, although influential Rise and Shine midfielder Wiseman Maluleke is one booking away from an automatic ban.
The match is set for a 3.30pm kick off.