FROM a fan's perspective, Colchester Rugby Club first team's London League division one north game at Southend, is perhaps the most exciting game of the season where two of the biggest clubs in Essex will be going head-to-head o Saturday.

Over the years the county rivals have had some very exciting and eventful encounters and this weekend's game is likely to be no different.

Southend had a difficult start to the season.

The south Essex side have experienced an unprecedented turnover in personnel as many of their established players made the short journey from Warner's Bridge to Magnolia Road to join Chris Green at Rochford.

This must have been absolutely devastating for the Saxons, but under the leadership of director of rugby Josh Ward they are re-building and their results show that they are rapidly improving and cannot be taken lightly.

Colchester, meanwhile, sit second in the table and were delighted with theirr convincing win over Amersham and Chiltern, especially considering the number of changes they were forced to make due to injury and unavailability.

Going into a game without their first choice front row, captain and ever-present scrum half was a challenge, but the side met the challenge head-on and executed the game plan extremely well.

This week they welcome James and Alex Mitchell back into the front row with the in-form Dan Brennan at hooker.

The second row combination that finished the game against Amersham - Oliver White and Alex Burman - will start against Southend.

Both Burman and White had excellent games; Burman provides the power, aggression and drive, whereas White brings the athleticism, precision and agility and together, they provide the perfect combination.

With Dan Whiteman unavailable there is one change in the back row, though, with Harrision Pickett reverting to his customary position at number eight.

The back division remains largely unchanged.

After his man-of-the-match display last weekend, Brett Cutbush will look forward to another start at scrum-half.

Damien Brambley will switch from full-back to outside centre which means that Jordan Milburn will make his second first XV appearance of the season at his favoured full-back position.

Milburn made his debut at Eton Manor on the artificial pitch and put in an excellent performance and bringing him into the side will definitely inject even more pace into the line-up.

As long as the forwards can secure plenty of ball in the right areas, Colchester will be hoping that their backs will keep the Southend defence busy.