MALVERN Town's Ben Hayes scored a first-half hat-trick as the league leaders thrashed Bradford Town for a second time this season. 

Hayes had three by the break to put The Hillsiders 3-0 up against a side they beat 8-0 earlier in the season. 

Substitute Matt Turner scored within 60 seconds of the restart to make it four before Bradford pulled one back through Benjami Wickens.

Harlie Price then scored two in three minutues just after the hour mark to wrap up a convincing victory for Malvern, who stay five points clear of second-placed Cribbs at the top of the Hellenic League Premier. 

Malvern came into the clash having already scored 80 goals in the 2022/23 league campaign and after three consecutive wins, they did not look like slowing down here.

The visitors started on the front foot and took the lead inside nine minutes when Hayes curled home from a deep corner. 

The Hillsiders looked in total control and doubled their advantage just before the half-hour mark when Harry Clark’s cross was met by a diving header from Hayes at the far post.

It took a total of 29 minutes for Hayes to complete the treble and his third saw the winger fire home after good work from Lewis Spurrier. 

Spurrier and Price almost added to the lead but a combination of good keeping from Bradford's Mark Bowden and the woodwork kept the score at 3-0 heading into half-time.

Spurrier was brought off at the interval and his replacement Turner made an instant impact, applying the finishing touches to make it 4-0.

The home side them launched an attack of their own which ended with Wickens reducing the arrears as he fired into the roof of the net.

As the home side enjoyed a spell on top, Wickens went close soon afterwards as he came in at the far post and then he almost broke through again but Keiron Blackburn in the Malvern goal did enough to put him off.

Price scored his first goal for the club in the week in the narrow win at Hereford Lads Cluband he carried that form into the weekend, scoring twice with clinical finishes to complete the rout.