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A vintage year for the Chiang Mai Sixes

Chiang Mai Pool league

Down but not out in Bangkok

Chiangmai SportRoundup

A vintage year for the Chiang Mai Sixes

Local teams bag two trophies

Geoff Thompsen

It was a vintage year for good cricket at this year’s 18th Chiang Mai International Cricket Sixes, which ended in climactic fashion with five finely contested trophy matches played out in hot sunshine last Saturday afternoon (April 2).

Sixes Spoon winners, Gymkhana Cavaliers, led by Eric Little who dyed his hair for a sponsored dare that achieved valuable donations to help junior cricket. The Cavs team included junior Sawasdee cricket graduates ‘Orf’, ‘Bank’, and ‘Tee’ as well as PRC teacher Ajarn Worawat, volunteer junior coach Chris Simmonds and Sixes’ Tournament Director Maurice Bromley.

Among the winners were the Chiang Mai’s own Gymkhana Cavaliers (69 for 2 wickets) who took the Spoon trophy over 18 year veterans of the Sixes, the Wombats (68 for 2). Again locally, the Irish Pub Gang Green team shared in a tied final match for the Joe Carpenter Plate with England’s Stairway to Heaven Drifters.

In another result favouring a local team, the Chiang Mai Chassies (66 for 0) continue to be unbeaten in their annual tussle with the visiting Dixie Belles (49 for2), the Ladies Challenge.

In the main competition, last year’s losing finalists, the Surrey Vagrants (88 for 2) from England went one better this year to lift the Sixes’ Cup, holding out against a strong reply in the final from Marchweil Outlaws (77 for 1).

Two Aussie teams battled for the honours in the new Shield competition, and the Moonshine Warathais (89 for 1) were convincing winners over the more fancied Lords Taverners (63 for 1).

The Sixes’ Bowl this year saw Englishmen the Ashwell Crusaders (53 for 0) comfortably pass the total of Malaysia’s Silver State (50 for 2).

For the first time the Chiang Mai tournament was successfully broadcast live to the world over its website (, run by local webmaster and host Mike McCune of Infothai.

This year’s Chiang Mai Sixes was perhaps one of the smoothest run and most enjoyable in the tournament’s history. The cricket played was of a generally higher standard, with some quite brilliant individual performances. Even before the final day, the knock-out rounds for each trophy produced keenly fought, exciting, and close contests.

Next year’s 19th Sixes will be held April 2-8, with the challenge to get even better.edged inventor of international six-a-side cricket, and one of the founders of the Chiang Mai Sixes.

Chiang Mai Pool league

Down but not out in Bangkok

“One night in Bangkok and the world’s your oyster…”

Adam Head

Well, no oysters, but this last Easter weekend, Chiangmai Farangutans F.C. were privileged to participate in the 23rd Bangkok International Soccer Tournament.

A disparate bunch of some twenty soccer teams hailing from all over SE Asia, including Korea and China, conspired to find themselves at approximately the same coordinates in time and space, and then proceed to run around all day in the hot sun and smog.

Add to this mix the following improbable factors: players surfacing from nights of Bangkok revelry to be ready to play at 9 a.m.; matches starting bang on time with full complements of players and referee and linesmen in official attire; perfect playing surfaces resembling putting greens, free farang food and soft drinks (all day long), massage teams available in the airy stadium. It was, I am sure you will agree, a remarkable occurrence that transpired last weekend at Pattana International School.

“Ah,” said a team-mate, “it’s the Germans who organised all this.” Say no more, say no more. Vorsprung durch Wotsit, and all that. Chiangmai Farangutans would like to take this opportunity to extend their thanks and respect to the “German All Stars”, who hosted an enjoyable event that held potentially nightmarish logistical implications. Well done boys! (Oh, and by the way, bad luck for losing in the final! – it definitely crossed the line though.)

Day one (Saturday) dawned with rain clouds dominating the skyline. Thus it was that our Team T-shirts, bearing the names of our kind sponsors, the UN Irish Pub and the Chiangmai Mail, were a little soggy as we entered our taxis for the trip down Sukhumvit to the breezy playing fields on Soi 105. Thankfully, the clouds quickly desisted from watering the pitches and limited the ferocious sun to sporadic outings.

Ideal playing conditions, however, were of no help to FFC in their first match against Hanoi Capitals. Perchance a little disoriented in their new surroundings, a “soft” goal conceded from a corner saw the Chiangmai outfit playing catch-up for most of the match, and it took a great strike from 20 yards by midfield dynamo Rick Mann to salvage a well deserved point.

It might be worth mentioning to our readers that the games were only 20 minutes long (10 minutes each way). Each team was therefore able to play 4 matches each day. Day one comprised the group stages, that is to say, the twenty teams were divided into four mini-leagues.

Nevertheless buoyed by their valiant comeback in their first encounter, the Farangutans went on to win their next match 1-0. The Taipei Red Lions were given a veritable mauling in midfield, and the 3 points were bagged courtesy of a close-range strike from Shawn Kelly, after a great knockdown from Bryan “shaggy” Haggerty.

This was our cue not only for relief, but also excitement at the fact that we were heading our group, and not about to be disgraced by the array of muscular foreign outfits who had the unnerving habit of performing soccer’s version of the Haka at regular intervals across the site.

Goals, however, despite the waiving of the offside rule for the weekend, proved hard to score within the allotted time period, and the final two matches proved disappointingly goal-less. Nevertheless, a good day for us Chiangmaians as we secured second place in our group with a noteworthy final point against group-winners, and eventual finalists, the German All-Stars.

So, a trip back to the hotel for a shower, a nap, and a beer or three. Oh come on, we had a duty, surely, to participate fully in the nightlife of the host city. And fun it was too. (NB: could the attractive Thai ladies caught on camera sporting Farangutan shirts please return them to their owners fully laundered, along with Ross’s toothbrush and the team’s portrait of Nobby Stiles. Thank you Tilac.)

Sunday dawned bright and hot, and FFC were eagerly anticipating further progress in the tournament after securing a berth in the prestigious “Cup” with an excellent first day’s unbeaten record. Alas, it was not to be. No doubt feeling the strains of the previous day’s exertions, let alone the “nocturnal happenings” that ensued, the Farangutans failed miserably to get out of second gear. Despite heroic goalkeeping from Markie Flowers, two crashing defeats to the French Olympique Gaulois from Singapore, and the Hong Kong Squadron, saw the Chiangmai outfit immediately eliminated into the Plate competition, or was it the Bowl?

Demoralisation was the predominant mood in the camp as the scorching heat reached its peak at 2 p.m. Fruitlessly searching for an explanation for their fall from grace, the boys were rescued from their trough of despair by the stirring words of Captain Lee Stevens who somehow managed to instil fresh motivation in his beleaguered troops. Following his rousing speech with a true skipper’s performance, the Farangutans stormed back to form with a well deserved 1-0 victory against a hapless Bayon Wanderers (from Cambodia). Carrying the ball out of defence, beating a succession of challenges on the way, Lee’s searching long ball played Adam through in the wide right position. Adam’s control and turn left the defender and ‘keeper stranded, and his subsequent cross found Rick unmarked with the goal at his mercy. Excellent first-time control by the marauding midfielder set up a simple tap-in, and FFC were back on track.

Swiftly on to the concluding match, this time against the Shanghai Krauts where the now buoyant Farangutans attacked the tired opposition from the outset, dominating midfield and creating numerous chances. Captain Lee opened the scoring with a spectacular effort from the halfway line, one for Ripley’s Believe It or Not, before Rick Mann capped a fine goal-scoring display with his third of the tournament, his low drive the culmination of a slick passing move all the way through midfield from defence. Well done Rick on winning the Farangutans’ Golden Boot.

And well done Farangutans on a creditable display featuring three wins, only two losses, and three draws.

Thanks again to the German All Stars for organising a terrific weekend, and a big thank you, as always, to our kind sponsors, the UN Irish Pub and the Chiangmai Mail.