Poole Pirates: Wimborne Road return suited Chris Holder

Bournemouth Echo: NUMBER ONE: Chris Holder NUMBER ONE: Chris Holder

CHRIS Holder felt the timing was right for a return to Wimborne Road and had no hesitation keeping his promise to Pirates chief Matt Ford.

The Ringwood-based Aussie will be part of the Poole line-up for a month after replacing fellow countryman Darcy Ward, sidelined by injuries sustained in the New Zealand Grand Prix.

Making his seasonal debut with a modest five paid six in the 49-41 Elite League win over Coventry on Monday, asset Holder featured for Pirates for the first time since breaking a shoulder, fracturing a hip and breaking a heel at Bees’ Brandon circuit in July.

And the Sydneysider, who is signed up to clubs in Poland, Sweden and Denmark in 2014, is confident that his 28-day spell will work out positively.

He told the Daily Echo: “This year is a trial to see if taking a few meetings less works better and if it doesn’t, hopefully Poole will have me back one day.

“I just felt coming back from an injury I didn’t want to be pushing myself all the time by racing every day, so I thought I’d ease back into it.

“Right now nothing’s really happening. We raced in Poland on Sunday and in the Grand Prix a couple of weeks ago, so Poole fits in alright.

“Now it’s looking like four meetings before the next GP rather than just one in Poland, so that definitely helps.”

Having months ago promised to step in if needed, Holder was certain Ford would be in touch following Ward’s spill.

And the 2012 world champion, ninth in Pirates’ all-time scorers list, was only too happy to agree to the promoter’s request.

Holder said: “When I saw Darcy wasn’t in good shape the morning after he got hurt, I knew straight away I’d be helping out and I was waiting for the call.

“I didn’t really want to commit to a full season but stuff like this is no worries. It’s a shame what happened to Darcy but that’s the way it is and hopefully I can get a few points and get back into the swing of things.

“I said to Matt at the end of last year when I decided I wasn’t going to do it, ‘if something happens, I’m only down the road and I’ll come and help you out’.

“I didn’t think it was going to be this quick but it happened and hopefully I can help.”

Meanwhile, it has been confirmed that Good Friday's Elite League double-header against Swindon will also function as both legs of the Elite Shield.

Elsewhere, Kyle Newman has been drawn in the first British semi-final which will take place at Sheffield a week tomorrow (7.45pm).

However, the Poole reserve's participation has been thrown into doubt after he crashed in a Premier League Cup meeting at Peterborough last night.

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