BEWDLEY edged out Oldswinford and Stourbridge Social by one wicket in a thrilling top of the table Worcestershire Division One clash.

Presented with what turned out to be a splendid pitch, Oldswinford chose to bat and made largely untroubled progress.

Seamers Andy Platt and James Marsh were reasonably economical and should perhaps have bowled more overs than they did, but the bulk of the wickets were taken by spinners Jack Mills (4-98) and Simon Mauger (2-68).

Mills’ otherwise undistinguished figures were notable for his first ever hat trick, and this helped Bewdley to reduce the opposition from 250-3 to 263-8, which was still an imposing total despite the quality of the pitch and speed of the outfield.

Bewdley’s reply started solidly with 57 for the first wicket before Nick Wilkinson (21) and Mauger were out in quick succession.

Enter the in-form Rob Combes, and he and Paul Beard added 91 in only 14 overs before the latter fell for a valuable 57.

Two more quick wickets followed, but Matt Cowdery (16) supported Combes in another useful partnership.

Combes was eventually caught at the wicket for a blistering 92 (including 11 fours and four sixes), and at 219-7 Bewdley still had a lot of work to do. But Callum Wilson (31) joined Mills and they added 44 in only seven overs.

Wilson in particular was in splendid form and he scored freely.

He took two boundaries to bring the scores level, but was then out, and Platt followed straightaway. However Marsh safely negotiated the last ball of the over and an anticlimactic no-ball saw Bewdley home with nearly four overs, but only one wicket, to spare.

Victory means Bewdley are top of the table. They go to Rushwick on Saturday (1pm).

The seconds suffered a disappointing defeat away at Redditch after failing to bat the allocated overs for the second week in succession.

After winning the toss and electing to bowl, Redditch reached 243-7. Chris Darby took 2-44.

But Bewdley fell 53 runs short despite a good knock from Connor Franklin (56).

They will be hoping to improve at home to Rushwick on Saturday.