Thailand qualify for semi finals of ACC Trophy Challenge
The jubilant Thai players celebrate after their first ever victory
over the Maldives. (Photo ACC/Eric Little)
Thailand’s men’s cricket team breezed into Monday’s semi-finals
after remaining unbeaten in the group stages at the ACC Trophy Challenge
2009 tournament taking place here in Chiang Mai.
A last gasp thrilling win over the Maldives last Monday was followed up
later in the week with comprehensive victories over China and Iran by
eight wickets and 97 runs respectively.
Thailand’s 6 run win over the Maldives at the Gymkhana ground was their
first ever against their arch-rivals from the Indian Ocean and Assistant
Coach Ziaul Hoque was naturally jubilant at the result: “We’ve been
trying for four years to beat them, this is a sweet victory and shows
how good we are getting,” said Hoque.
Thailand had posted a score of 165 from 49 overs with Nishadh Rego top
scoring with 62 not out. The Maldives had a great go at reaching the
target but fell just 6 runs short, with Rego once more showing his all
round skills by taking 3-38.
The home team’s form proved too much for China in their second match,
the Chinese being all out for 39 with man of the match Noppon
Senamontree taking 4-21. Thailand knocked off the required runs for
in the loss of just 2 wickets in 6.3 overs.
Next up for the Thais was Iran in what was effectively a quarter-final
tie. Thailand won the toss, batted first and posted a commanding 230
from their 50-over allotment with captain Zeeshan Khan top scoring with
63. The Iranians never really got going in their reply despite a valiant
knock of 40 from skipper Nariman Bakhtiar. They lost wickets at regular
intervals and were eventually all out for 133, with Ashish Dey taking
3-18, and Shyam Sideek 3-25 for the home side.
The Thai team was due to play its semi-final game at the Gymkhana ground
this Monday against either Brunei or Bhutan. The winner of that match
will go on to face either Oman or the Maldives in the final this
Wednesday at the Prem Oval. Should Thailand fail to come through their
semi final, they will play in the 3rd and 4th place playoff match at the
Gymkhana ground, also on Wednesday.
For the very latest results check the tournament website at