Diamonds and Steelmen set for a cup clash

Corby Town take on AFC Rushden & Diamonds in the Integro League Cup at the Dog & Duck tonight

Corby Town take on AFC Rushden & Diamonds in the Integro League Cup at the Dog & Duck tonight

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AFC Rushden & Diamonds host Corby Town in an all-Northamptonshire affair in the Evo-Stik Northern Premier League’s Integro League Cup at the Dog & Duck tonight (Tuesday).

The re-arranged first-round clash is subject to a 12.30pm picth inspection this afternoon following the heavy rain in the past 24 hours but should it go ahead it will see the Division One South Diamonds take on the Steelmen, who sit at the foot of the Premier Division.

Diamonds extended their unbeaten league run to 12 matches with a 3-0 win at Loughborough Dynamo at the weekend while the Steelmen halted a run of four league defeats in a row with a 3-3 draw against Ashton United at Steel Park.

But Diamonds boss Andy Peaks is set to ring the changes for tonight’s game.

“It’s not a game I am taking lightly but it’s not massively important to me,” he said.

“It will be a good opportunity for some boys to get more minutes under their belts.

“The likes of Joe Curtis and Lewis Leslie will be involved and Ben Ford will need more minutes and Lewis Wilson will also come back into things.

“It will still be a fairly strong team that goes out there and I expect them to be very competitive.”

Steelmen boss Gary Mills, who was a hugely popular player at Rushden & Diamonds before the original club folded, could take a different approach, however.

Corby have made a number of new signings since Mills took over at Steel Park and he insists he wants them to play together as much as possible.

“We will analyse what we feel we need for the game and we will decide which way we are going to go,” the Corby manager, who yesterday completed the signing of striker Jordan Smith from Stamford, said.

“I want to try to get the lads together as much as possible.

“They are a new group and the understanding will grow the more they play together.”