MALVERN Town started life in the Hellenic League Premier Division with a point from a 1-1 draw at 10-man Westfields on Tuesday evening.

It was the first competitive fixture for Town at Step 5 and it was always going to be tough against one of the sides tipped to be at the top end of the table come the end of the season.

The Hillsiders were presented with a big boost towards the end of the first-half when Westfields keeper Ian Harvard was sent-off for a tackle on Malvern’s Matt Turner, but they could not make it count as the points were shared at the Allpay Park.

It was a competitive start to proceedings and the visitors had to weather an early storm when twice clearing off the line before they took the lead against the run of play on 18 minutes.

Harry Clark swept down the left flank, chasing a long ball before cutting inside and tucking it past Harvard into the far corner.

As the home side looked to hit back, they then found themselves a man down as well as a goal down when Harvard was given his marching orders.

He was attempting to clear the ball as Turner broke on the counter attack, but took the on-rushing striker down and left the referee with little option.

Westfields came out of the blocks with real purpose at the start of the second half and levelled matters on 48 minutes as Joe Davies pounced on a through ball from Richard Greaves to beat Keiron Blackburn with a rasping shot to equalise.

Reynolds hit the post moments later from a tight angle and Turner also went close to re-establishing their lead but they could not find the winner and had to settle for the point.