St Ives Town boss Ricky Marheineke is relishing the prospect of taking on the top team in Southern League Division One (Central) tonight.

The third-placed Saints go to leaders AFC Rushden & Diamonds for a crunch promotion clash at the Dog & Duck Ground in Wellingborough (7.45pm).

And Marheineke is expecting an improved performance from his men after they slipped to a first defeat of 2016 last Saturday when going down by a single goal to strugglers Aylesbury United.

"We've usually reacted well after a defeat and hopefully that will be the case again," said Marheineke, whose side will kick-off seven points behind their hosts.

St Neots are also in action tonight as they entertain promotion-chasing Hitchin in a Southern League Premier Division clash at the Premier Plus Stadium.

Eynesbury Rovers are also on home soil as they host AFC Kempston Rovers in a United Counties League KO Cup tie which has been postponed on numerous occasions.

And Eynesbury chief Mark Ducket is another boss anxious for his players to put a weekend disappointment behind them.

His side saw their 12-match Premier Division unbeaten run come to an end when slipping to a 2-1 defeat against Sleaford.

And they look assured a stern test tonight against a title-chasing Kempston team who are unbeaten in UCL action all season.

"It is a very difficult tie, but I'm delighted it falls when it does," said Ducket. "It is a test of myself and the players to ensure we respond in the right way after the disappointment of being beaten at the weekend."