BASILDON skipper Jim Harman believes tomorrow’s table-topping clash with Millwall will go a long way in deciding who wins the London Three Essex title this season.

Frontrunners Basildon sit three points clear of second placed Millwall ahead of this weekend’s clash at Gardiners Close.

And Harman is fully aware of how important the clash could prove to be.

“On paper, it’s the biggest game of the season,” said Harman.

“Millwall and ourselves have edged away a little at the top of the division so a win here could create as much as an eight point gap, which could be huge seeing as we’ve only missed out on five points so far this season.

“A positive result could go a long way to determining which side will finish on top of the standings in April.

“But, whatever happens, there is still a long way to go even after this weekend.”

Basildon have won nine of their 10 games so far this season but have been out of action since beating Canvey Island 34-7 in mid-December.

But Harman believes the Christmas break will work in Basildon’s favour.

“It’s always a good thing as it’s time for some niggly injuries to be put right,” said the skipper.

“The refreshing thing this year is we’ve had a couple of weeks back in training before playing to eradicate any rustiness.

“We’ve also managed to get a couple of players back from injury and barring Garry Bettis, who we lost for the season way back in the summer, we’re relatively clear of injuries right now.”

And, with that in mind, Basildon are looking forward to this weekend’s clash.

“We’re feeling confident,” said Harman.

“As the league position suggests, over the first half of the season we’ve won as many games as anyone and to find ourselves right at the top of the division can only be a good indicator.

“We’ve had some tough fixtures along the way but we feel we should be able to cope with the challenges Millwall will pose and come away with a positive result.”

And Basildon coach Mark Cushi will also be making sure the team are well prepared for the crunch clash.

“We will work hard in training to make sure we have our game plan established for this particular match,” said Cushi.

“With players back from injury and quality new players joining us mid-season, we make sure every player knows what’s expected from them if they get selected.”

Basildon, who have won their last seven games, have back row Rob Jones and powerhouse centre Aaron Beach available again after they both returned to full training.

Sixth placed Canvey Island are also in action tomorrow as they head to the bottom of the table Mavericks.