BEWDLEY rose to the top of Worcestershire Division Two with this commanding performance at Malvern.

Asked to bat first, Malvern got off to a reasonable start despite economical opening spells from Andy Platt and James Marsh.

The first four batsmen all made useful contributions, but twirler Jack Mills accounted for three of them and then tore through the middle order, finishing with career-best figures of 7-36.

A late flurry enabled Malvern to reach 194, by no means a negligible score, but unlikely to be enough against Bewdley’s powerful batting line-up.

And so it proved as Nick Wilkinson, Paul Beard and Mike Harris batted solidly, and when they succumbed, Rob Combes and Gareth Lewis came together in a match-winning partnership.

Combes fell just before the end for a particularly brutal 72, and then Lewis (39 not out) and Matt Cowdery saw Bewdley home.

Bewdley entertain Oldswinford/Stourbridge Social in the league on Saturday (1pm start).

Meanwhile, the seconds suffered a home defeat to Pedmore in an exciting game which went down to the wire.

Bewdley elected to bat after winning the toss and got away to a quick start, withConnor Franklin continuing his good form with a fluent 59.

The introduction of spinners Trusswell (4-33) and Giles (4-68) put the brakes on the scoring rate and meant Bewdley were bowled out out for 193 in 45.5 overs.

Excellent 18-over spells from both Tom Weaver (3-46) and Dave Jones (3-41) gave Bewdley hope of victory.

But Pedmore took the game away with an excellent partnership between Trusswell and Gale.

Matt Thwaites gave Bewdley a chance as he picked up two valuable wickets, but Pedmore made 197-8.