18 May, 15:44
It's down to the wire now for the five contenders who have been shortlisted for the ultimate individual accolade in northern hemisphere rugby, ERC European Player of the Year 2013.
"There are four French clubs left in the Amlin Challenge Cup but that makes no difference whatsoever as our sole target is to beat whoever we come up against," said Balshaw, capped 35 times by England and a British & Irish Lions tourist to Australia in 2001.
"That happens to be Brive, who, just like us, are in something of a dogfight in the Top 14.
"We got a real hammering at their place earlier in the season and, while we won the return at home, we know it is going to be a really tough game.
"You could say that Brive are in a win-win situation and that there is no pressure on them as people will say we have home advantage and that we will be favourites.
"But Brive have a very physical pack along with a fair few individuals who can make things happen.
"Shane Geraghty is a top-class player who makes any team tick - and he has certainly been doing that for Brive - and Jamie Noon is also in there plus some very good forwards."
The Top 14 matches went with home advantage - Brive winning the Round 7 encounter 32-7 and Biarritz triumphant 26-11 in Round 20 - and they will know just about all there is to know about each other's strengths and weaknesses.
Biarritz survived a scare against London Wasps in the quarter-finals before edging through 26-23 and Balshaw insists they have to bring greater consistency into their game.
"We are unlikely to make the top six places in the Top 14 and qualify for the Heineken Cup that way so that makes the Amlin Challenge Cup a massively important competition for us," added Balshaw.
"The Amlin is a huge competition and the incentive for us is that we are two games - albeit two very hard games - away from a trophy and that trophy also provides the winner with a gateway into next season's Heineken Cup.
"We want to be playing in the best club competition in the world and that is the Heineken Cup but we have had a tremendously frustrating season so far because of our inconsistency - and that has shown in both our performances and results.
"We have got ourselves away from the basement in the Top 14 and, although we are not clear yet, we have a squad capable of competing with the best if we could only get some real consistency. We also have to become more cut throat because a club of Biarritz's stature needs to be involved in the business end of the season, competing for play-offs places and silverware.
"The Amlin silverware is still there and getting into the Heineken Cup that way and ensuring next season we play in the Heineken Cup for a 13th time is a huge driving force for us.
"We will be focusing totally on ourselves and in getting the fundamentals right - the scrum, line-out and kick-offs - to give us a platform because we also have players capable of creating things.
"We have to approach the semi-final against Brive as a fantastic chance of qualifying for the Amlin Challenge Cup Final at the Twickenham Stoop."