MALVERN Town's mid-season slump continued on Saturday as they lost their third league game in seven days with a 2-1 defeat at mid-table Royal Wootton Bassett Town.

Sam Packer scored what turned out to be the winner in the 60th minute after Malvern's Matt Turner had equalised before half-time following Christopher Taylor's opener from the penalty spot.

The defeat sees Malvern drop all the way down to ninth in the Hellenic League Premier Division after the mid-week defeat to AFC Longlevens came after a dramatic 5-4 home reverse to Cribbs last weekend.

Defeat at 13th placed Bassett concludes what has been a harrowing week for Lee Hooper's men, who have now taken just eight points from a possible 24 in the last eight matches.

Having lost back-to-back home games against fellow play-off contenders in Cribbs and Longlevens, an away trip to mid-table Bassett looked like the perfect way to end the slump but after just eight minutes The Hillsiders found themselves behind.

Samuel Morris was brought down in the box and Taylor stepped up to convert the penalty to give the hosts an early lead.

Malvern responded well and enjoyed plenty of possession before they got the equaliser three minutes before half-time when Turner was on hand to stab home after Lewis Platt's header came off the crossbar.

Dave Reynold's went close as his free-kick was deflected just wide before big appeals for a Malvern penalty were turned down when Joe Bates was clattered in the area.

The visitors were pushing to take the lead; Kyonn Evans went close with a low strike and a mistimed header from Bassett defender Adam Corcoran almost went into his own net.

But with an hour played, the hosts claimed the lead once more as a free-kick from out wide was flicked on by Packer and past Keiron Blackburn in the Malvern goal.

Malvern were staring down the barrel of yet another defeat but Adam Sauntson twice went close as they tried to find another equaliser.

There was to be one golden final chance for Malvern to salvage a point but the crossbar denied Bates and just about summed up Town's luck at present.