VIRGINIA Water manager Ceri Jones admits the FA Vase preliminary round tie at Malmesbury Victoria today (Saturday 3pm) is the biggest match in their modern-day history.

The Waters have never reached the first round proper of the Vase but are a club heading in the right direction following two successive promotions.

Malmesbury are unbeaten in four matches in Hellenic Division One East, but Premier Division side Waters showed their resiliency with a win against Royal Wootton Bassett Town in midweek.

Jones told the Observer: "We know nothing of Malmesbury other than the fact they're riding high towards the top of the league having scored 25 goals.

"It's a potential banana skin but probably the biggest game for Virginia Water, if not in our history, then in the last 30-40 years.

"We're going to enjoy it regardless, but if we can get a result then we would be delighted.

"The club has never reached the first round proper before, but all we're trying to do is move in the right direction and be competitive at this level.

"The win in midweek, and if we could come away with a win on Saturday, then credit to the lads and we will feel we're playing at the level we belong.

"Looking at the strength of their performance this year, I would like to think Malmesbury would back themselves at home but, likewise, I'm going to back my lads against anybody regardless of us being at home or away.

"What is quite ironic this year is our away form has been a lot better than our home form. We haven't lost away from home which is something we didn't expect.

"I am pretty sure it'll be a tense and competitive affair and I'm sure the best side will come out on top."

Looking back on their league win in midweek, Jones said: "We were pretty resilient and, coming up against one of the top sides and top strikers in the league, to keep a clean sheet, lets give some credit to the defence and keeper.

"That's reassuring and our fitness held up well in midweek. Early on in the second-half you could tell we were the fitter side and what was pleasing is we kicked on from there.

"We took our chances and made a few more, going close with a header that went just over the bar and a couple of deflected shots, so on the night no-one could have begrudged us the win."

Grab a copy of the Observer next Friday for the match report and pictures.