MALVERN Town conceded the winner two minutes from time despite taking the lead at Cheltenham Saracens.

Eighth-placed Town were beaten 2-1 on Tuesday night in only their second Uhlsport Hellenic Football League Division One West game this month.

Harry Clark fired Malvern ahead on 12 minutes but Saracens levelled in the second half before bagging a decisive second late on.

On a difficult surface at Petersfield Park, Town started the game with purpose and a positive run from Clark in the opening minute saw his cross claimed by the keeper.

Malvern opened the scoring on 12 minutes when Matt Fusco did well in the middle and as Matt Turner flicked on Clark showed pace to get into the area and lash the ball into the roof of the net.

As the hosts looked for a response Town keeper Charlie Weaver was alert to head clear outside his area.

There were shouts for a penalty for Saracens too but Fusco powerfully fired narrowly wide on the stroke of the interval.

Louis Loader's free-kick for Malvern was saved early in the second half while Weaver pushed out a Harlie Price effort at the other end.

Fusco fired over before Saracens scrambled clear from Clark who also dragged an attempt wide.

But Malvern were pegged back as the home side's Jordan Bryan forced the ball into the net from close range after a corner.

Then Town substitute Dave Reynolds was sent to the sin-bin for dissent.

But Malvern pursued a winner with the keeper thwarting Fusco and James Febery headed the resulting corner wide.

A long-range effort from Loader on 86 minutes was pushed onto the roof of the net.

But with two minutes to go careless play in the middle of the park ended with Saracens hitting Town on the break and Price applied the finish to snatch all three points.

Malvern now visit Cirencester Town Development on Saturday (3pm) before taking on Worcester City in the Worcestershire FA Senior Cup on Monday at Pershore Town (7.45pm).

The fourth-placed reserves return to action at Herefordshire FA League Premier Division leaders Clee Hill United on Saturday (2.30pm).

Malvern: Weaver, Hayes, Wickett, Febery, J Sauntson, Loader, Moran, Craven (Harris 55), Turner (Reynolds 57), Fusco, Clark. Subs not used: Griffiths, Emblem.