HIGHWORTH’S reserves are on standby to play in the first-team’s Hellenic League Floodlit Cup tie at Wantage tonight.

However, first-team boss John Fisher feels the second-string will not be needed as he believes the third-round clash will be called off due to poor weather anyway.

Fisher is keen to have a squad as fresh as possible for Saturday’s Hellenic League Premier Division game at Reading Town, and has therefore put in place the precaution with the reserves.

But he reckons they will not need to be called upon in any case.

“I would think that there’s no chance of it being on, but the reserves are taking the fixture anyway,” he said.

“You’ve only got to have two or three players get knocks against Wantage and we’ll be struggling for Saturday.

“I want to save the players for this weekend.”

Meanwhile, Chippenham will this morning hold a pitch inspection ahead of their Southern League Premier Division clash with Arlesey.

Wet weather decimated the fixture list across Wiltshire last weekend, with the Bluebirds seeing their game against St Neots at Hardenhuish Park rained off.

Chairman Neil Blackmore admits that tonight’s meeting with Arlesey is in the lap of the gods.

He said: “At 9am on Saturday there was approximately two inches of standing water in the lower goalmouth and this ran up through the centre of the pitch, as far as the centre circle. Both tram lines where officials run were under water.

“The pitch does drain well but we do it need to stop raining for this to happen. Looking at the forecast, it seems to be luck of the draw where the showers will land, so let’s hope not on Chippenham.”

Elsewhere, Cirencester will host Hungerford in the third round of the Red Insure Cup if the Corinium Stadium surface is playable.