ROYAL Wootton Bassett Town manager Rich Hunter is relishing the chance to go head-to-head with the Hellenic League Premier Division’s form team tomorrow.

Bassett’s hosts are a Thatcham Town side who have won their last nine league matches as well as reaching the fifth round of the FA Vase – and who will be looking for another victory to close the gap on inactive pace-setters Highworth at the summit to six points.

Despite defeat for his side in their last three fixtures and the exits of striker Rory Sproule and midfielder Matt Cheetham for Highworth and Wantage respectively in recent weeks, manager Hunter sounded an upbeat note ahead of Bassett’s tough test in Berkshire.

“We always like the challenge of playing the top teams and will prepare properly,” said Hunter.

“Although we have lost a couple of players recently we still have plenty of strength in depth in the squad and will go to Thatcham with a team capable of producing the goods.”

Bassett took to the field for the first time in 2018 on Wednesday night but their return to action was shortlived. Their Perpetua Press Floodlit Cup tie with rivals Highworth was all-square at 1-1 early in the second half when it was abandoned due to heavy fog.

Hunter added: “It was the right decision to call it off but we played some good stuff for 55 minutes. I felt we were the better side on the night and we’ll be looking to take that into Saturday’s game.”

Fairford Town could climb out of the bottom four if they emerge with all three points from tomorrow’s home game against Oxford City Nomads. Jody Bevan’s team have drawn their last two matches and had Shane Bumphrey and Lee Smith on target as last Saturday’s game at high-flying Flackwell Heath ended 2-2.

Struggling New College will look to end a run of six successive defeats in Division 1 West when they visit the side a place above them in the table, Shortwood United Reserves. The second-from-bottom students have shipped 19 goals in their last two matches.

Shrivenham can book a place in the Bluefin Sports (UHL) Challenge Cup quarter-finals when they entertain Premier Division opposition in the shape of Binfield.