Both tournaments featured ten teams from locations far and wide, who competed in Cup, Bowl and Plate divisions. All participants ensured that the spirit of the game and the ACST mantra of “Friendships through Cricket” was adhered to throughout.
The Sixes saw debuts for Samoan outfit Eagles CC and House of Cricket from Northern Cape in South Africa, with several of that group leaving their homeland for the first time as skipper Michael Payne received the Spirit of Cricket Award. The Bounty Buccaneers returned after a nine-year sabbatical to join familiar contenders at the event.
Heritage Cricketers were to prove worthy Cup champions of the competition, to compensate for their runners-up berth at the same grade in 2018. Star player Toufiqul Nayan was named as Player of the Cup Final in the Heritage victory against Warriors of Qatar, for whom outstanding performer Imal Liyanage went on to be crowned as Player of the Tournament.
The Australian contingent had plenty to cheer as Leederville CC of Perth defeated local side Patong Penguins in the Bowl final, while Victoria’s Southern Stars proved too strong for the Buccs in the Plate in the other two divisions.
A few days later the teams arrived on the island to compete in the Thalang 7s at the Alan Cooke Ground which again provided a fitting setting for players and spectators involved in the Phuket Cricket Week.
Cricket Club of Dibrugarh, regular attendees from Assam in India, added to their Bowl victory in 2016 and Plate victory in 2017, by lifting the premier Cup competition as they defeated another local team, the debutants of Phuket Misfits. Dibrugarh’s Bitop Mahanta was named as Player of the Final by the adjudicating panel.
The Bowl was lifted by ever present outfit, CBB Postels, which will no doubt have been celebrated at their clubhouse in Chiang Mai, after they overcame Qatar side Rowdiez in the final. In the Plate final Surfers Paradise Demons were too strong for the holders, Phuket’s Village Cricket Team.
Surfers Simon Worthington collected the coveted Spirit of Cricket Award, while the consistent play of Daniel Neu of the ADF Tigers won the plaudits as Player of the Tournament of the 7s.
Several social functions were held for participants throughout the events at Mamma Mia, the Aussie Pub and the Arinara Bangtao Resort, as local businesses were patronised.
ACST Chairman, Michael ‘Cat’ Maher was a happy man as he reflected on the 2019 festival. “We have enjoyed another wonderful Phuket Cricket Week in which we have welcomed new sides as well as old favourites. There has been some magnificent cricket and friendships cemented. My congratulations go out to all teams, regardless of winning trophies. They have all been a credit to themselves, the Cricket Week and the ACST.”
“The ACST is proud of the wide diversity of our participants as we bring cricket fans from around the world together. I’d like to thank all the committees of the ACG and PCG for their valuable assistance. I would also like to thank our valued major sponsors, The Phuket News, Arinara Bangtao Resort, Sunwing Bangtao Beach, Premier Best Western Bangtao Beach Resort & Spa and Asia Escape Holidays. Here’s to 2020 and more Fun in the Sun!”