READ replaced Baxenden in second place as Barnoldswick stretched their lead at the top of the Houldsworth Ribblesdale League.
Mohammed Jamal and Jon Harvey were the main architects of Read’s 88-run success over the champions at Whalley Road.
Jamal scored a run-a-ball 84 out of his team’s 225-8 before Harvey claimed 5-59 as Baxenden hit early trouble when they replied.
Padiham, meanwhile, slipped up at home to Clitheroe and former professional Kashif Siddique as the visitors went fourth after a five-wicket success and Settle’s wash out against Great Harwood.
Siddique showed his undoubted class with 7-37, limiting the hosts to a 145-run total, and then securing maximum points with a gallant knock of 83.
“That fourth spot keeps eluding us,” said Arbories professional Chris Holt. “Kashif came back against his old club and he was a different class.
“He didn’t give us a chance and it’s hard to bowl against someone in that form and in that kind of mood. He beat us single-handedly and I think we’d have gone on to win if we’d have got him early. He’s just got so much class.”
Anthony Hall, Nesir Mehmood, Callum Clarke and Holt all fired 30s for the home side while the paid man claimed four wickets, taking his tally to 47 for the season, in the reply. But it wasn’t enough as that elusive fourth spot went astray once more.
“It keeps eluding us,” conceded Holt. “We’ve just got to keep plodding along, working hard and try to string a few wins together. Fourth spot is still the target.”
Meanwhile, Holt was full of praise for team-mate Steve Meehan who was named in the Inter League side to face North Lancashire and Cumbria League at Furness CC on July 8th.
He said: “He’s done very well to be included. The team is picked on stats and in the first half of the season he’s bowled very well. He’s certainly there on merit because he was in the top five bowling averages. He’s earned his place.”
There was brighter news for Padiham’s second team however.
In the Second Division, Padiham dismissed Feniscowles seconds for 95, as Toby Muldoon took 3-16, Paul Leach 4-23, Mick Hawke 2-32 and Curtis Meehan 1-15.
In reply, Padiham cruised to a seven-wicket win, with Neil Anderson finishing unbeaten on 52, after Peter Shirtcliffe made 29.
Padiham seconds sit at the top of the table having won seven of their eight games, with the other game abandoned.