40 not out and still playing

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320

Pattaya Cricket Club hosted the British Club last Sunday at the beautiful Thai Polo Ground for a social game of cricket that represented Jack Dunford’s 40th anniversary of his very first cricket match in Thailand.

Fouteen-a-side was the format, with batsmen batting in pairs and in descending order of age, against their respective bowling pair for 4 overs each. Five runs were deducted for each wicket lost and the format meant every player batted for 4 overs and bowled 2 overs. It promised to be fun and entertaining for all, except the scorer!

Needless to say it was Jack (74 years young) and Colin hastings (72) who opened the innings for the BC against the fearsome duo of Bobby Young (65 and a bit) and Richard Harvey (65 just). It was fair to say the flight and guile of the experienced bowlers proved too much for Colin who was out twice, but Jack was at his masterful best as he nudged and knurled his way to 5 not out. A few wides meant the score was in positive territory, but not by much.

As the ages decreased so the batting became more intense and the bowling more lively. With a change of innings after the first four pairs and the net score at 76 the game was deemed to have started well, mainly because there had been no injuries.

PCC in response began in the most reassured fashion with Bobby and Richard looking as they had played the game forever, well they had really. Richard was particularly severe on anything short and Bobby nearly hit one off the square. For all of Jack’s experience and knowhow he and Colin could not break an amazing and enterprising opening partnership of 18 that put PCC firmly in control of the match. After 4 overs PCC were net 68 and the game was set for a thrilling finale.

The BC batsmen really upped the run rate as Denzel and Dale in particular found the boundary regularly and BC completed their innings with an impressive net 142. However, the PCC batsmen were in no mood to roll over and Venky and Salman launched an assault against the BC best bowling attack to incredibly reach a net 121 with 2 pairs still to bat. Andy Emery looked in fine touch but kept the BC side interested by losing his wicket from the last ball. But Wezley and Bernard made the game safe despite some fantastic catching by Ben Eastwell and ensured PCC won back the Dunford/Philbrook Trophy.

The post match fines session included a fine (a shot of a rather disgusting spirit) to five fielders who could have all taken a catch offered by PCC batman Paul who top edged straight up to the slip cordon and no one laid a hand on it!

The after match party was held at the club sponsors Retox Outback Bar where many cricketing stories of yesteryear were recounted and Jack was presented with a miniature cricket bat, signed and dated as a memento of a wonderful day and achievement We are all looking forward to the 50th anniversary!