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Cricket Sixes off to a flying start

Scorching weather, hot stuff from Malcolm

Chiang Mai Pool League

International meet at PS Bowl

Chiangmai SportRoundup

Cricket Sixes off to a flying start

Story and Photos by Alan Parkhouse
Chiangmai Mail

The first team of Thai juniors to come through the ranks, playing as Thai Thevada, did well against the Gipsies on the opening day.

Former Australian representative Trevor Chappell, bowling, is one of the big stars at this year’s Chiang Mai International Cricket Sixes. His team the Moonshine Warathais started with a win in their first match.

The Chiang Mai International Cricket Sixes, one of the biggest amateur tournaments in the world, was off to a flying start on Sunday morning at the historic Chiengmai Gymkhana Club grounds in the heart of Thailand’s northern capital.

A record number of teams entered this year with 33 club sides from around the world flying into Chiang Mai for a week of exciting six-a-side cricket in a party atmosphere.

With interest in the sport at an all-time high thanks to the ongoing World Cup in the West Indies and the Chiang Mai Sixes celebrating its 20th year, this year’s tournament shaped up as the best on record.

Teams from Australia, Bahrain, Bangladesh, China, England, Japan, Malaysia, New Zealand, South Africa, the United Arab Emirates, Vietnam and Wales have entered, as well as six teams from Thailand.

Each year some of the big names in the cricket world play in Chiang Mai, and this year former Australia representative Trevor Chappell is returning, along with Sri Lankan stars Jeewan Mendis, Rangana Herath, Avishka Gunawardena, Mahesh Perera, Riaz Farook and Lanthra Fernando.

Chappell, a regular every year in Chiang Mai, plays for Australian team the Moonshine Warathais, and they started with a win in their first game on Sunday.

Six-a-side cricket, which was pioneered in Thailand, is a very fast and shortened form of the one-day game, and the short format produces an intensity of play that even first time viewers can enjoy.

Each team fields six players and the batsmen face a total of 30 balls, five overs of six balls each. In six-a-side cricket each ball counts and the action is fast and furious.

The Chiang Mai venue is a classy one. Set close to the middle of town, the Chiengmai Gymkhana Club was started 109 years ago by British teak traders and apart from a first-class cricket oval and practice nets, the grounds also boast a golf course.

The Gymkhana Club ground is in top shape this year with a number of improvements taking place since last year’s tournament. A set of turf wickets has been installed along with new drainage on the ground as well as a new scoreboard that can be seen all around the oval.

Each day’s play kicks off at 8.30am and up to 14 matches are scheduled daily before stumps at about 5.30pm. The fact that up to 14 games are played each day is a good indication of how fast and furious the action is.

But while cricket is the main theme and topic of the week, fun and socialising are also high on the agenda at the Chiang Mai Sixes. Many of these amateur cricketers return every year and in between cricket matches they enjoy sightseeing and meeting the locals in Thailand’s northern capital.

Other activities such as parties and a pub crawl around the old city through the week ensure the teams get to know each other as well as get a good look at one of Thailand’s oldest cities, plus its nightlife.

The biggest winners at the end of the week, however, are the local school children, with all proceeds from the tournament going towards developing cricket in local schools.

Many Thais are surprised to learn that hundreds of local children are involved in regular cricket competitions in the area and as well as the Chiengmai Gymkhana Club grounds, Privy Council chief Prem Tinsulanonda has also had a proper cricket ground built in Chiang Mai.

Over the years many of the visiting teams have donated their equipment to the local school teams and top players like Trevor Chappell always spend time coaching the juniors in the nets during the week.

As in previous years, a junior competition is held on a pitch next to the main field and for the first time a team of young players who have graduated through the local school system will take part in the main competition.

Named Thai Thevada, the team of local boys had a rough introduction to senior cricket when they played the Gloucestershire Gipsies in their opening match, an experienced side from the UK.

The local boys did well, but eventually fell to the experienced bowling of the visiting team.

Admission to the beautiful, spacious grounds of the Chiengmai Gymkhana Club is free and there is plenty of shaded seating for spectators plus a wide variety of foods on sale. Cold beer and other beverages are available from the Boundary Bar, which is right in the heart of the action.

For more information, see www.chiangmaisixes.com.

Chef takes his position in the field.

The media was well represented at this year’s Chiang Mai Sixes.

Australian team Yarrambat took on the United Arab Emirates side Darjeeling on the first day.


Scorching weather, hot stuff from Malcolm

Sandy Lie

At this time of year, caddies dress up like Bedouins to combat the sun, and for someone who likes the shade of the trees, I marvel at golfers who don’t even wear a hat. And while 17 weary Chiang Mai Golfers staggered into Lanna’s clubhouse, after a 5 hour trudge in furnace conditions, tee shirted Malcolm Tetley bounced back from a trip to England and took the honours last Tuesday with a scintillating net 64 - ten shots ahead of his nearest rival, Gorden Langtree.

Malcolm Tetley bounced back from a trip to England and took the honours last Tuesday with a scintillating net 64.

This was Malcolm’s first triumph of the year and something to build on, and it will be interesting to see if his game gets hotter as the weather is sure to in the coming two months.

In the Golfers’ other event, Malcolm, Gordon, Scott Lumsden and Roger Mack all came home with one skin each.

The Royal League’s scratch tournament has already been fought for and won, but last Tuesday’s final round saw Chiang Mai’s leading lady golfer, Samantha Richdale, play the front nine at the Highlands in 4 under par.

No one in the League has managed a sub seventy, and Sam missed out by an ant’s antler. Nevertheless, her two under round of 70 still enters the record books and ensured a 7 shot victory over Gunti Sigurjonnson. Grahame Curry and Steve Belair came in joint third on 82.

The League’s stroke play event two days later resulted in an amazing three way tie, which produced two new faces to the leader board and a familiar one.

On a hot day with sanded greens, Jeff Smith gritted his teeth to overcome heat and back pain and card a gross 44 on the way out, which included 3 pars. Jeff may have wilted a little on the back nine, but his gross 95, net 70, was enough to put him in the frame for the first time.

On the other hand, first time winner, Steve McWhorter went from strength to strength as the round progressed. Undaunted by Sahara temperatures, Steve followed up on a respectable front nine score of 48 with an impressive 42 coming in, and his gross 90 also computed to a net 70.

Steve Polaski needs no introduction, and he made up the triumphant trio with a gross 77, which included 12 pars and 1 birdie.

Handicaps were being frantically adjusted after a spell of good scoring in Happy Bar Std’s stroke play tourney at Mae Jo last Monday. Jimmy Catterson will have 3 shots chopped from his handicap after tying with David Cameron with a net 69. But those scores were not good enough to beat Mike Nuen’s 67, and he too must face the handicapper’s adjudication.

Wednesday’s event at the Highlands saw Don Peterson achieve a runaway victory with a net 69, but when things get ordinary Happy golfers can always rely on Noel O’Dwyer to liven things up. Last week’s double champ became this week’s chump when 3 four foot putts on the 18th ended up back at his feet, and he finally holed out for a ten. Where some players are consistently good or bad, Noel is consistently inconsistent.

Lastly, Friday’s Happy event produced mixed fortunes for Christian Hedegaard-Friis, with birdies followed by triple bogeys, and it was Dennis Woerner who took the day with a net 72 from Gordon Langtree on a best ever net 73.

For more information visit www.theroyalleague.com, www.chiangmaigolfers.blogspot.com or ring Garry Walker on 081 032 8803, and for Happy Bar Std’s ring Noel O’Dwyer on 089 256 5705.


Chiang Mai Pool League: Wall comes down on Moon

Pat Black

In an otherwise predictable night in the Chiang Mai Pool League last Friday, The Wall produced a shock result against reigning champions Half Moon Pub, Chiangers and Bangers grabbed a much needed win away from home, and Maggie’s Place shot 4 places up the table.

Gip of Enjoy Place, setting things up.

As main contenders for prime position in the league ladder, Half Moon Pub won’t be pleased with an out-of-sorts performance at The Wall. The first few frames of the evening produced a comedy of errors and squandered chances, with The Moon taking the lead twice on 1-0 and 2-1. Battling Brian looked to stretch the champ’s lead to 3-1, as he took his stance to pot the black. He managed to do that together with the cue ball and instead the score moved on to level.

From then on, it was downhill all the way for The Moon, who was only able to capture one more frame.

Contrary to The Moon’s faltering ways, top of the heap Blue Sky Bar will be more than happy with tonking Number 1 Pub in a rearranged fixture last Wednesday. The Bar swept into a 6-0 lead before Pascal and Cedric reduced the arrears for Number 1. But showing rampant form, the league leaders ran out 8-1 winners, stretching their advantage to two points, and also reducing their frames won deficit against The Moon’s from nine to four.

A very consistent Inter Bar produced a clinical performance to dispose of close rivals December Bar, and draw level on points for second place with one game in hand. Four two up at the break, Inter never looked like losing their grip on the match, and the final result saw December drop down a place below The Wall.

After their recent loss of form, Enjoy Place got back on track with a flamboyant display of sharp shooting against visitors, Happy Bar. The away side couldn’t compete with the standard of potting on the night, and at 5-1, the match was over at halftime. However, Enjoy took their foot off the gas to allow Happy to save face by taking two of the three doubles.

Elsewhere, Maggie’s Place came back from 0-2 down to lead 3-2 at Blue Sky Garden, who rallied to even the score at the break. But from there, Maggie’s took the initiative and all the doubles to climb from 14th to 10th in the league.

La Villa may have changed their name to Chokdee, but they ran out of luck at home to lowly Chiangers & Bangers - losing by the odd frame - while The Local never really got going in their match against a strong Oasis. And bottom boys Em & Em came tantalizingly close to a win at Heaven’s Beach, but eventually went out with the tide, 4-5.


International meet at PS Bowl

A group of Chiang Mai’s ten pin bowlers from nine different countries meet at PS Bowl, Sriphum Road every Wednesday, and in last week’s event, 25 competitors turned up to do battle. The format is simply to divide the players who arrive into teams by drawing their names from a hat. Then each player bowls 3 games.

(Back row, left to right) Surachat and Ken, with (front row left to right) Da, Emely and Pim, winners of last week’s friendly ten pin bowling at PS Bowl.

A highly efficient handicap system enables any bowler to achieve a score of around 200 per game, and it’s often the odd pin that makes the difference between winning and losing the weekly prize.

With an indivisible number of contestants last Wednesday, 5 teams of four and 1 of five started the tournament, and so the calculator went into overdrive to find the eventual winners, who were Pim, Ken, Surachat, Emely and Da.

It was worth noting that Surachat is not only one of the oldest players at 73 years, but he also has the lowest handicap - often shooting a straight 200 plus.

The atmosphere in the group is competitive, but remarkably friendly, with fun and meeting people high on the agenda. It was good to see an equal number of Thais and foreigners enjoying themselves together.

For anyone interested in chancing their arm, just turn up at PS Bowl any Wednesday at 3.30 p.m. Make yourself known to Les Harvey and he will sort out who plays in which team.