TYREE Clarke hit a brace as Tividale cut the gap to league leaders Wolverhampton Sporting with a five star showing against Bilston Town.

Clarke's double and strikes from Nathan Jones, Darragh Bustin and Elliot Hartley handed Dale a 5-1 home win last Saturday.

The gap to Sporting is down to just one point after the West Midlands Premier League pacesetters lost at in-form Malvern Town.

Tivi had to come from behind after conceding an early penalty at the Beeches but eventually ran out comfortable winners to earn their eighth win in their last nine games.

Manager Dave King was happy with another important three points but won't be getting carried away with more than half of the season still to play.

He said: "It was a pretty comfortable win again. We played really well and dominated.

"We did have to come from behind again after giving away a silly goal but the longer the game went on the stronger we looked.

"It's great for the league that it is so tight at the top of the table but it is still early days.

"We're not quite half way yet and things can soon change, especially with the pitches getting heavier and styles of play having to change a little.

"We are ahead of where we thought we would be but there is still a lot of football to be played. We will just try and keep the momentum going."

Tividale now face a tough trip to fifth-placed neighbours Cradley Town this Saturday.

Joe Colley, Liam Wilkinson, Liam Smith and Freddie Watts could all return after missing the Bilson success.

However, King will now be without the absent Curtis Cocking for three games.

"I'm expecting a very tough game at Cradley," added the boss. "They are a very good team with some very good players and there is no doubt that we are going to have to be at our best.

"Confidence is high at the moment but I think we need to try and find the form we showed in our FA Cup run earlier in the season if we want to come away with something from the game."