MALVERN Town twice came from behind as 10-man Town battled through the elements to bring home three points after a gritty 3-2 win against Cheltenham Saracens on Saturday.

Goals from Harry Clark and Jay and Adam Sauntson ensured Malvern extended their lead at the summit of the Hellenic League Division One West table despite playing for 30 minutes a man down after Harry Wickett's red-card.

Town were due to play in the Banbury Litho Floodlit Challenge Cup tie against Tytherington Rocks on Tuesday evening but it was announced on Monday that it was postponed due to a "potential covid case".

Malvern's next game, therefore, will be their big FA Vase first round proper clash at home to Rothwell Corinthians on Saturday.

The conditions played their part from the outset and caused difficulties for both sides in the early exchanges.

Matters were made worse for Town on the 12th minute as Wickett's first yellow card was given after a foul in the box, which allowed the hosts to go ahead from the spot.

Conditions worsened mid-way through the half as the torrential rain added to the winds and both sides found it hard going.

It took until the 55th minute for Town to find the equaliser when Clark seized upon some defensive hesitation to tuck home for yet another goal for the prolific striker.

Wickett was given his marching orders on the hour mark with his second booking to leave Town down to 10-men and discipline failed the visitors further with 20 minutes to go when Jay Sauntson was sin-binned, leaving Town with nine players on the pitch.

The home side took advantage of the extra men almost immediately when a close range finish put Saracens back ahead.

With ten minutes to go, it was looking like Town were going to suffer a rare defeat but when a corner was drifted into the box on the 81st minute, Jay Sauntson met it with a towering header to level the scores and the momentum was with the away side.

With time running out, a foul on Clark gave Malvern a free-kick which Phil Harris curled in and Adam Sauntson headed home to put Town in front for the first time and despite a few scares, held on for a huge win.

Co-manager Dene Whittal-Williams was full of praise for the way in which his team battled back to earn all three points, despite being a man down for such a long period.

“The lads showed a lot of character out there,” he said.

“The conditions were awful for the most part and it’s fair to say that it was an ugly performance, but it proved effective in the end.

“We challenged the lads to dig deep and they did that against previously unbeaten opponents who had quality and physicality about them.

“To play with ten men for half-an-hour and even go down to nine men for a time, makes it even more of an achievement.

“We’re so proud of the lads."