Pro Chris Holt helps inspire Padiham to victory

IN FORM: Chris Holt, pictured bowling in the opening game against Barnoldswick, hit his first 50 on Saturday

IN FORM: Chris Holt, pictured bowling in the opening game against Barnoldswick, hit his first 50 on Saturday

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CHRIS Holt fired his first half-century as Padiham professional to guide them to their third successive victory.

The Arbories side have seen their fortunes change since losing their opening two games of the Ribblesdale Cricket League.

And captain John Bushell believes much of that transformation is down to the impact and consistency of Holt’s performances.

After Holt had taken four wickets to limit Oswaldtwistle Immanuel to 115 from a rain-reduced 37 overs, the experienced pair formed a formidable partnership as they stormed to a seven-wicket win.

“It was a great result and a good performance,” said Bushell.

“It was a rain-affected game so we were reduced to 37 overs.

“We bowled first and restricted them to 115.

“Naveed Ashraf and Nesir Mehmood bowled a very tight spell early doors and then Chris Holt has taken four wickets.

“Considering how we had been bowling in the last few games and letting teams get on top of us, I was really pleased with how we responded.

“We lost early wickets though, which put us under a bit of pressure at 9-3.”

Padiham had been sitting precariously on 9-3 following the exits of Kevin Hitchon, Kurt Robinson and Lee Anderson, but the professional and skipper smashed 53 and 51 respectively in an unbeaten 107-run partnership.

Bushell added: “Myself and Chris have come in and steadied the ship and we knocked them off.

“Holty got his first 50 for Padiham Cricket Club and I was very pleased with his performance.

“It wasn’t an easy wicket to bat on but he showed a lot of maturity and rose to the occasion.

“He didn’t play his normal attacking game so he had to work hard for his runs.

“He’s a very consistent performer and he certainly suits our team.”

Padiham are at home to Earby on Saturday, while neighbours Read are at struggling Settle.