Alan Devonshire expects to give plenty of first-team players a run-out when Braintree Town face Harlow Town in the quarter-finals of the Essex Senior Cup at the Amlin Stadium tonight.

The Iron boss feels his players will benefit from time on the pitch rather than having a training session after not having much action in recent weeks due to games being postponed with waterlogged pitches.

Devonshire said they had been disappointing in their 1-0 Skrill Premier defeat by Woking on Saturday and while he refused to blame the fact they had had no action for two weeks before that game for that loss, he wanted to give them a chance to impress tonight (kick-off 7.45pm).

He said: “It will be most of the players that I put out.

“We need the game to be honest.

“We need to get up to speed after a poor performance on Saturday.

“I’ve spoken to the boys and they’ve said themselves that they feel the need to have a game.

“You can’t beat actually playing for getting match fitness.

“Look at the results we got last year when we were having Saturday-Tuesday-Thursday-Saturday games.

“The lads got tired a bit, but nothing keeps you fit like playing and it does affect you when you’re not.

“There will be some that I rest, though.

“Deano (Dean Wells) has a bit of a dead leg and Alan Massey could do with resting his ankle, while Sam (Habergham) has a shoulder problem, so they won’t play, but there will be about 75 per cent of the lads out there.”

The game against Ryman League division one north side Harlow can be played tonight because Cambridge United are in FA Trophy action against Luton Town.

The Iron had been due to face Cambridge in a Skrill Premier fixture tonight, but the U’s drew 2-2 with the Hatters in the Trophy on Saturday and face a replay tonight meaning the Essex Senior Cup tie can be played.