MALVERN Vale opened up the Cheltenham League Division One title race with a 3-2 win at previously-unbeaten leaders Tewkesbury Town.

With top scorer Ameer Khan signing for West Midlands League side Dudley Sports, Vale responded by recruiting 16-year-old Archie Gibbs and Halo Gharib.

They started slowly on a tricky surface but went ahead on 22 minutes when Ryan Upson beat the offside trap to slot home from Nick Jones’ through-ball.

Vale began to get a hold on the game and just after the half-hour mark Upson fed Gibbs who calmly scored a debut goal.

A deflected Tewkesbury effort evaded keeper Marcin Celmer and found the net but was ruled out for offside.

Celmer made several saves and Jones was sin-binned for dissent just before half-time.

The keeper was again called into action but Tewkesbury pulled a goal back when they broke down the right and the ball was squared for a simple finish.

Two minutes later Town levelled when Samson Arishe was penalised for what seemed a soft penalty which was dispatched into the net.

But Vale bagged the winner with just minutes to go when Gibbs was ruled to have been fouled and Andre Rodrigues, returning from injury, scored from the spot.

After three away wins on the bounce Vale return home to play Newton on Saturday.

Welland Reserves lost 3-2 at home to Windyridge Rovers in Division Two with Ted Leah and Simon Haywood on target.

Malvern Vale Reserves drew 2-2 at home to fellow Division Three strugglers Southside Star Reserves with Joe Turner (2) scoring.

Welland went through into the Worcestershire FA Saturday Junior Cup semi-finals with a 4-2 win on penalties at higher-ranked Fairfield Villa.

Christopher Watling scored as the sides were level at 1-1 in the last-eight clash.

Welland will host the winners of the clash between Bredon and Kidderminster Harriers under 21s.

Will Dovey netted for Upton Town in a 1-1 Midland League Division Three home draw with Enville Athletic.

On Saturday, Welland host WLV Sport in Division Three while Upton head to Continental Star.

Bromyard Town saw off visitors Old Wulfrunians 2-0 in West Midlands League Division One.