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Update December 22, 2014


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Chiang Mai Lanna CC's tribute to Phillip Hughes

Cricket bats lined up as Lanna CC players pay tribute to fallen Australian cricketer Phillip Hughes.

Richard Lockwood
A minute's applause was made and the bats lined up in tribute to Phillip Hughes before the start of Lanna CC's match against United CC from Vietnam on Saturday. The match was played in a very good spirit and the two teams met up again later in the evening at UN Irish Bar to reflect on a wonderful match which saw the home side defend a total of 135 to win by two runs. Man of the match was Russell Ward on his debut for the club as he scored a controlled 29 when he opened the batting and then took three wickets for just two runs with his leg-spin as United were bowled out for 133.
Another notable performance came from Lanna captain Pete Warner who showed the virtue of years in the game by overcoming a sticky start to make an unbeaten 26 from 29 balls as 39 runs came from the last five overs. Russell Ward had batted very steadily but other batsmen had found a varied attack difficult to get away.
After another sumptuous cricket tea it looked like the home side were a few runs short of a good total as James blasted 33 from 21 balls before retiring so Lanna knew they would have to bowl out the opposition. Wickets fell regularly as Adam Green took 3 for 17 and Chairman Tom's hypnotic lobs seemed almost unplayable at times.
Tanvir was one of three members of United CC (Chiang Mai) who were welcome additions to the touring team and he made 21 while Guy brought his side close to victory as he made 19 batting down the order but Russell was well rested after his batting exertions when he came on with 11 runs needed from 3 overs. First he had Burhan caught at mid off as Paul Johnson took his third catch and in his next over he had Guy stumped and Mark Jones was brilliantly caught by Southend Pete to end the match.
The dangerous James had come back to the crease at the fall of the ninth wicket but he was left stranded without adding to his score and Lanna had won a memorable match by two runs and an enjoyable day was had by all as we reflected on the sad passing of Phillip Hughes.


Trip of a lifetime to Sri Lanka for Hill Tribe Boys

The boys at Galle.

Richard Lockwood
Three talented young cricketers who are looked after by the Hill Tribe Fund and play cricket in Chiang Mai have just returned from a memorable stay in Sri Lanka. Bunchuai, Cher and Chanchai have been visiting the Cricket Live Foundation to play, train and coach but their trip began with a visit to the famous R Premadasa Stadium in Colombo to watch the first One-Day International between Sri Lanka and England.
There had been rain in the morning leaving the ground fully covered as the boys arrived but the rain stopped and the covers removed in time for a full 50-over match to be played and what a match the three boys were treated to. Over 600 runs were scored as Sri Lanka reached 317-6 in their 50 overs but only won by 25 runs as Moeen Ali hit the ball to all parts to reach his century in just 72 balls.
It was a fantastic occasion for the boys to watch international cricket for the first time and as the Sri Lankan crowd was in high spirits. Bunchuai, Cher and Chanchai were accompanied by Richard Cowles and girl friend Pern as well as their Lamphun coach Chris Dodd who as usual recorded the trip with his camera.

The boys with some of the kids from the Foundation in Sri Lanka.

The boys' great adventure had begun in style and they were all able to recover with a day's sightseeing which included a visit to the Cricket Club Cafe which is a place to which all cricket fans visit while they are in Colombo. Every item on the menu has a name connected to cricket and videos of famous matches are played continuously.
The boys' trip continued on with their first visit to the Cricket Live Foundation in Moratuwa where they met head coach Sanjeewa Silva and got some high quality net practice ahead of playing in a match on Saturday. The boys visited the Moratuwa Sports Club and looked round the Test match ground in Moratuwa.
The boys would later help with coaching the young Sri Lankan children who are looked after by the charity but this afternoon they were fully involved in a session with the local youngsters which was designed to show the benefits of team work.
There was an entertaining class room session which saw the use of the white board and even saw the children making Christmas decorations. This was followed by all sorts of fun and games in the garden where each boy had to rely on the support of his team-mates in a variety of activities.
The Cricket Live Foundation is a New Zealand-run charity which helps under-privileged Sri Lankan children by training them as cricketers and teaching them life skills so there seems to be a special bond between the locals and the Hill Tribe Fund children who have all their educational needs looked after as well as developing as wonderful young cricketers.
Bunchuai, Chanchai and Cher were fully involved in the afternoon's activities which ended with numerous presentations with the red Lamphun caps to the fore and the boys were also able to say thank you for the tickets for the ODI that were kindly provided by Cricket Live.
Sri Lankan schools cricket is world famous as a breeding ground for first-class and Test players so it was a great opportunity for Bunchuai, Chanchai and Cher to be involved in a junior match played at St Benedict's College in the Kotahena district of Colombo. The school was founded in 1865 and is considered as one of the leading schools in Sri Lanka and known as the oldest catholic school in the island with a history of almost 150 years.
The school has a long history in playing sport with a champion cricket team as well as enjoying great success at football and rugby so the boys will have learnt a lot from being involved in a match with some outstanding young Sri Lankan cricketers.
After spending Sunday working on their game, it was time for a day out for the boys so the tour party headed for Galle. The Galle International Stadium is one of the most picturesque cricket grounds in the world as it is overlooked by a historic Dutch fort and stands beside the Indian Ocean on the south coast of Sri Lanka.
Richard and Chris took the boys on a sight-seeing trip that involved a visit to the Test ground that was completely rebuilt after the tsunami of December 2004 and was the ground on which Muttiah Muralitharan took his 800th Test wicket to bring down the curtain on an outstanding Test career.
The boys then looked round the historic fort which was first built by the Portuguese in 1588 and then heavily fortified by the Duch in the 17th century. The fort has had a colourful history which is reflected by the architecture of the buildings inside the fort and its importance has been recognized as it has been made a UNESCO World Heritage Site as it perfectly illustrates the interaction of European architecture and South Asian traditions over four centuries.
With the history lesson over, Rich and the boys soon found a game of cricket to join in on one of the grassy areas within the fort. Chris was busy taking several memorable photographs of the interaction between Thai and Sri Lankan cricketing traditions which has been the centre point of this wonderful trip.
After an enjoyable trip to Galle the tour party returned to Colombo to sample another part of the local cricket scene after they had been invited to visit Colts CC which is a leading first-class club by their Secretary Sanjaya Attanayake who is an enthusiastic supporter of junior cricket in Sri Lanka and has shown great interest in the development of cricket in Thailand following a recent visit by his Sri Lankan Masters team.
Richard Cowles provided the details:
'We had a nice afternoon today with the sun finally shining in Colombo at Colts CC. Sanjaya took us all out for a superb buffet lunch, followed by nets at Colts and coaching with their senior captain Muthumudalige Pushpakumara ("Pushi"). We then had a few beers in the clubhouse and talked about Thailand cricket and met Nishantha Ranatunga, brother of former national captain Arjuna, who is president of the club and secretary of Sri Lanka Cricket, who was inspecting alterations to the pavilion. Ranatunga said Thai juniors would be welcome at the Colts academy.'
Lanna Juniors and Lamphun coach Chris Dodd also reflected on a very enjoyable and successful trip:
'It has been a great trip, the boys have thoroughly enjoyed it and will definitely go back more knowledgeable about what it's like to be in a real cricketing country. The boys haven't looked out of place here, their skill levels are good and their performances have been high. They'll need to tweak some things when we get back but generally I'm very happy with it all.'
The boys only played in one match but they were immersed in a cricketing environment on every day of their trip that will benefit them greatly. Contacts have been made in Colombo, Moratuwa and Galle that should ensure the boys will return again to play more cricket and receive more high quality coaching.
The last day before the boys returned home was again spent in Moratuwa with the Cricket Live Foundation as they had a last net practice in the morning and then visited two schools to help Sanjeewa Silva as he put the local youngsters through their paces.
This gave Bunchuai, Cher and Chanchai the chance to try their hand at coaching which will also prove invaluable experience when they return to the schools of Lamphun where they help Chris with the coaching. They were familiar with the throw downs and the perfect forward defensive shots being practised but it was quite a sight when the mat was rolled out and a mini game was played.
Perhaps one of the Sri Lankan children they coached will become the next Kumar Sangakkara or Mahela Jayawardene and the three boys certainly returned home with their appetite for cricket re-invigorated after a very memorable trip. They went straight to the nets to demonstrate what they had learnt to their young team-mates.
There was almost a fairy tale end to their Sri Lankan adventure as the three boys all played for Lanna Juniors in the inaugural Lanna Sixes and reached the Cup final before being narrowly beaten by Bangkok Spirits. The five HTF girls also played and looked splendid when wearing their new Sri Lankan outfits.
Funding for the boys' tour to Sri Lanka has been provided by The Willows CC in New Zealand, Chiang Mai International Cricket Sixes and Chiang Mai Lanna Cricket Club and the financial assistance is greatly appreciated. Thanks also to Sanjeewa Silva and Alex Rees at Cricket Live Foundation for all their help in arranging this wonderful trip.
A full range of photographs from this trip and further details on all cricket played in Chiang Mai can be found on www.lannacricket.org
 


HEADLINES [click on headline to view story]

Chiang Mai Lanna CC's tribute to Phillip Hughes

Trip of a lifetime to Sri Lanka for Hill Tribe Boys

 

 



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