GREAT Wakering Rovers could move a step closer to reaching the knockout stages of the Isthmian League Cup tonight.

Wakering are among the frontrunners in Group Six - which also includes Basildon United, Canvey Island, Hullbridge Sports, Witham Town and tonight’s opponents Tilbury.

While he will use the clash with the Dockers as an opportunity to give those currently out of the first choice starting line-up minutes, Wakering player-manager Steve Butterworth is expecting Tilbury’s ex-Basildon United chief Marc Harrison to name a strong side at Chadfields.

Butterworth said: “The Isthmian League Cup is not on our priority list and the winners of the group get a mouthwatering trip to Potters Bar Town in the first round of the knockout stages!

“We will use the game to get minutes into the boys that haven’t played recently.

“Tilbury appear to have gone with a strong team in each of their games in the competition so far, so I don’t expect it to be any different this time.

“Although this isn’t among our priorities, a win will see us move a step closer towards the knockout rounds and win the group.

“It’s a big game from that point of view because Tilbury could also go through if they beat us and win their remaining games.

“That gives the players a bit more of an added incentive.”

Wakering will be without wingers Alfie Hilton and Billy Johnson for the encounter with their Isthmian North rivals.

New signing Kojo Apenteng, who has joined from Barking, is cup-tied.