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Thailand cricket sees Southern stars

Thailand cricket sees Southern stars

CRICKET: National Games Region 4 cricket qualifiers, hosted at the Alan Cooke Ground (ACG) in Thalang (May 19 -21), enjoyed an exceptional weekend of both men’s and women’s matches, shining a very positive light on the sport’s future in Thailand.

By Neil Quail

Saturday 27 May 2023, 10:00AM

A thoroughly well-organised event featured men’s and women’s teams representing the Southern provinces of Pattani, Phatthalung and Songkhla, while the two-game per day tournament was only hampered by heavy downpours on Saturday morning, which influenced a reduction from the scheduled 15-overs to a T-10 format.

Friday’s matches first featured Pattani and Songkhla in the men’s section, with the former setting a target of 155 (for 4) after their alotted 15 overs. Songkhla’s spirited performance managed a competitive 106 in reply, being bowled out in the final over to give Pattani a 49-run victory.

In the women’s match, newcomers to the sport Songkhla, posteda respectable 58 for 8 after 15 overs, but Pattani showed their experience in overhauling their opponent’s total without loss inthe sixth over for a 10-wicket win.

Pattani returned on Saturday morning to face Phatthalung, with their women’s team again securing an emphatic 10-wicket victory, reaching Phatthalung’s total of 53 runs in just the fourth over.

Pattani men were pushed very close for victory after setting a target of 59 for 5 in the reduced 10-over match, when Phatthalung rallied to need just 13 runs off the last over topotentially upset the favourites. Unfortunately, only 2 more runs would be gained, giving Pattani an 11-run victory.

Saturday was also highlighted by a coaching session given to the Songkhka teams by former Sri Lankan professional Ashan Fonseka of the Phuket Cricket Group (PCG), offering his insights to batting, bowling and fielding techniques.

Fonseka’s efforts arguably had some effect to Songkhka’s performances on Sunday, with their women’s side smashing an impressive 95 for 5 after 15 overs. Phatthalung, however, held their nerve to secure a 4-wicket victory by the 14th over.

Thai Residential

A nail-biting finish to the men’s game again saw Phatthalung pushed to the final over before claiming their second win of the tournament. Having set a good team-effort total of 101 for 10, Phatthalung faced a determined Songkhla batting side, whoreached 94 for 7 in their 15 overs, allowing Phatthalung victory by a bare 7 runs.

With two teams qualifying from this event, Pattani and Phatthalung both advance to the main event due to be held in Kanchanaburi later this year event, but Songkhla will certainly take great respect and applause for their efforts, and will undoubtedly prove themselves a force to contend with in futuretournaments.

Recognition must also go to Cricket Assiciation of Thailand (CAT), especially Thanan Mayteetammawat and Thanyaphat Ananchaikamon, along with their support team of umpires for their enthusiasm and efforts, ensuring an excellent weekend of cricket.

The ACG and the tournament was also honored by the visit of Thailand cricket player Rosanee Kanoh. Ms Kanoh starred for the women’s national team during their recent SEA Games gold medal victory in Cambodia, while her vist - and dedication – to cricket is very much an inspiration to young players throughout the Kingdom.

Further gratitude must also go to Seemant Raju abd Anongnart Ningnoi for helping to liaise with CAT guaranteeing a highly successful tournanent, while the ACG looks forward to hosting and developing more youth cricket in the future.

For more information on cricket in Phuket please visit the ACG Facebook page.

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