WEST Malvern’s promotion bid in Worcestershire League Division Four suffered another setback as they lost by five wickets to leaders Bromsgrove thirds.

Phil Chaundy made a welcome return as he top scored with 49 to steer his side to 117-9, but it was not enough. Jacob Matthews held his nerve to secure victory for Bromsgrove with the final ball of the rain-restricted encounter.

The start of the match was delayed after the covers were blown away by a rain storm before the captains agreed to go 20 overs per side.

After being asked to bat, Chaundy set about the Bromsgrove bowlers with controlled aggression. Josh Searle in particular was harshly dealt with, conceding 33 off two over.

But Will Lloyd (5) holed out off James Sergeant before skipper Will Jones (6) was bowled by Henry Marshall.

After Matt Penkoks (13) was removed by Max Smith, Chaundy was stumped by David Collins off leg spinner Sam Johnson.

Kuperan Yoganathan departed in the same manner shortly after and when Sam Beaumont was bowled by Matthews West’s innings was in danger of disintegrating.

A direct throw from deep left Joe Bird (12) stranded before Kevin Gilbert was bowled by Marshall in the final over which also accounted for Robin Lloyd (3). Matt Hindmarsh remained unbeaten on 18.

Under normal circumstances a target of 118 in 20 overs would not cause too much concern but tight bowling made the chase more challenging.

Hindmarsh picked up the wicket of Mark Bilborough (19) and Sam Beaumont (1-18) had Sergeant (12) caught.

Accurate bowling from Dakin and Beaumont, backed by fine fielding kept Bromsgrove’s rate in check.

The required rate fell below six for the final four overs before Jones saw off David Collins (27), caught by Dakin and Dwyer was run out by Will Lloyd for 32. An excellent diving catch from Lloyd dismissed Harry Smith and left Bromsgrove needing five runs from the last two balls.

Matthews struck a boundary to level the scores before a dramatic final delivery. Matthews failed to make contact, but the ball rebounded off Gilbert’s gloves.

On gathering, he saw the non-striker almost upon him. Matthews then set off to secure the last run as the ball was sent back to Jones.