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Eight teams pursue a spot in the ICC World Twenty20 2014

Top three teams qualify for the ICC World Twenty20 2014 in Bangladesh

The 8 team captains including Thailand’s Sornnarin Tippoch
(Photo courtesy of ICC/ Ian Jacobs)

The ICC Women’s World Twenty20 Qualifier gets underway today (Tuesday 23 July), with host Ireland, Canada, Japan, Pakistan, Netherlands, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Zimbabwe fighting for three qualification spots to the ICC World Twenty20, to be held in Bangladesh in 2014.
The host, who has placed its faith in a youthful side for this tournament, kicks off its campaign against Japan at The Hills.
Captain Isobel Joyce said, ‘We have had some good preparation starting off with winter training at the beginning of the year in the indoor training facility focusing on Twenty20 cricket. Then leading into this tournament we have been playing lots of cricket and most recently against Pakistan.
‘We are excited to play at home, it is growing as a game in the country and that’s a great thing for us, younger girls as well as boys can now see their team playing.’
Sri Lanka skipper, Shashikala Siriwardene, whose side missed out on direct qualification for the Bangladesh tournament after a comprehensive defeat in the playoff against India in the ICC World Twenty20 2012, will be looking to claim a spot at the second attempt. ‘It is really important to play in the next ICC World Twenty20, first up will be Canada we will do our best to get off to a good start and look to build momentum to take through the tournament.’
Netherlands skipper, Denise Hannema, whose side meets Zimbabwe in its first fixture at YMCA, is looking forward to the challenge. ‘It’s been a hectic year including the ECB 50 Over matches and we have played a few Twenty20 warm ups. We will look at the opening match against Zimbabwe as any other game, play as best we can, we are looking forward to it,’ said Hannema.
Thailand, who qualified for this tournament in January by winning the ACC Women’s Championship 2013, is excited for the challenge. ‘It is a great opportunity for us to be here, we’ve been working really hard for the past 6 months. We are very excited to play Pakistan in the first match, we have played them before and gained good experience we can take into the game,’ said Sornnarin Tippoch.
Ashley Burdette of Zimbabwe said, ‘We got to play against South Africa before this event and learnt a lot from them, we can hopefully take a lot from that experience. Netherlands are a strong team and we will need to play our best cricket against them.’
Japan’s preparation for the ICC Women’s World Twenty20 Qualifier was a tour of the UK in April. The captain Mariko Yamamoto said, ‘We have focused on our game and we are pleased with the way have prepared. Facing the hosts tomorrow we will look to take improvements into that match and get a good result.’ (ICC)

Youth cricket at the grass roots

CMSCA’s coaches staged a day’s cricket for children from Mae On using the new bowling machine provided during the Chiang Mai Sixes by Tokyo Dingbats from Australia.

Richard Lockwood
The Thailand women cricket team’s departure for Ireland where they are currently taking part in a tournament involving countries from around the world has signalled the end of the season here in Chiang Mai, but the search is already on for the next generation of young cricketers who will have a chance to play for Thailand men or women in the years to come.

One of the kids practises with the bowling machine which automatically sends down soft balls for the kids to practice their bowling.

With the start of the new school term came the chance for new children to be introduced to the intricacies of the game of cricket which does seem to be thoroughly enjoyed by Thai youngsters. A coaching program has been successfully organised by the Chiang Mai Schools Cricket Alliance over the last few years and this year has been no exception.
Coaches Martin and Puy Papworth have been visiting schools across the city of Chiang Mai and also reaching several schools in Mae On. The youngest children have been introduced to Sawasdee Cricket played with a softball but there is also a hardball program for older children who have shown some ability with bat or ball.
Structured lessons are provided at schools such as Buak Croc Noi in Chiang Mai or Sahagon 2 in Mae On and other schools such as Varee provide after school clubs to give every child a chance to experience the delights of playing cricket.
Several members of the Thailand Under-19 cricket team that played in Malaysia recently were discovered thanks to this program and one or two of the Thailand women’s team first had the chance to play cricket when they were as young as nine years old.
Sawasdee cricket can be played on school fields and practice with a soft ball can be done on concrete playgrounds but it is also important to give children the chance to play with a hard ball and to gain experience on a real cricket ground at an early stage.
The nets and cricket ground at Gymkhana Club are available for use when the weather allows so CMSCA’s coaches staged a day’s cricket for children from Mae On. This involved using the new bowling machine provided during the Chiang Mai Sixes by Tokyo Dingbats from Australia which automatically sends down 12 specially designed softballs so young children can get used to hitting a ball without fear of injury.
They then moved into the next net to face a hard ball as other children practised their bowling. The team of coaches even included Thailand women’s coach Eddie Joyner who gave up his time even on the day he was heading to Bangkok.
After lunch the children had the chance to play on the artificial pitch on the main ground at Gymkhana so they could begin to understand the basic ideas behind the game of cricket: they had the chance to run between the wickets, practise their fielding and to understand some of the Laws of Cricket.
It is hoped that the children will be able to play cricket at Gymkhana on Sundays twice a month in addition to their coaching at school so that they will be ready to play in a junior league by the start of the next season in October. The best players will also be able to take part in the Chiang Mai Senior League which involves junior teams playing alongside the men.
At a time when the Ashes will be making most of the cricket headlines it is important to draw attention to the grass roots cricket that is being provided in Chiang Mai so that the recent success of Thailand cricket teams can be maintained. It should be applauded that children of all ages and all abilities have the chance to play with their travel and food also looked after.

Chiang Mai Adventure Festival to be held at Mae Rim

The Adventure Festival will feature many activities such as cycling, motocross and kayaking.

Nopniwat Krailerg
The Chiang Mai Adventure Festival will be held in Mae Rim beginning August 10, 2013. It has been organized to promote eco-tourism and develop revenue streams for local people and entrepreneurs in Mae Rim. Activities will include cycling for HM the King, motocross races, ATV races, shooting competitions, kayaking and more. Additionally, after the days’ events, there will be concerts, exhibits and sales of OTOP goods.
Deputy Governor Jarenrit Sa-nguansath announced the government cooperation with the Chiang Mai Provincial Administration and Mae Rim District to organize the Festival in Mae Rim at first with a plan to extend it to other areas of the province later on.
All activities will be held throughout August and September to allow everyone the chance to participate in all activities.

HEADLINES [click on headline to view story]

Eight teams pursue a spot in the ICC World Twenty20 2014

Youth cricket at the grass roots

Chiang Mai Adventure Festival to be held at Mae Rim