Kerala Strikers beat Pattaya by 4 wickets in Cup Final

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At Harrow International School in Bangkok last weekend, Pattaya Cricket Club faced off against Kerala Strikers in the final of the League Cup competition.  Both teams had high hopes of bringing the winners’ trophy home but it was Kerala who came out on top in a hard fought 25-over final.

Batting first, PCC started well as Colin Clark and Venky put the fielding side under pressure with aggressive running and controlled hitting in an opening partnership of 47.  Colin departed for 18, edging Rajesh behind to the keeper and Paul Hack (3) was clean bowled soon after by the same bowler.  Rajesh was in the middle of an inspired spell as he removed the PCC captain Simon Philbrook (6) lbw with the score at 77/3 and completed his 5 overs by bowling John Speirs (9) to finish with figures of 4/19.

Salman Khan was Pattaya’s top performer, scoring 24 not out and returning bowling figures of 2/24.Salman Khan was Pattaya’s top performer, scoring 24 not out and returning bowling figures of 2/24.

Bipin, Prashan and Sreejith maintained the pressure on the PCC batsmen with immaculate fast medium bowling.  Only Salman managed to muster any sort of resistance with a gritty 24 not out as PCC recorded an under par score of 139/8.

PCC needed to start well in the field and the opening bowlers did exactly that.  Salman, having dropped an easy caught and bowled chance first ball, removed Rajesh (9) and Prashan (6) before leaving the field with back spasms with figures of 2/24.  Thomas Manoj bowled immaculately to register a miserly 0/10 from his 5 overs and when Hamza had Sumit (14) caught by the wicketkeeper with the score at 50/3 PCC sensed an upset was possible.

John Speirs induced an edge from Ratheesh (29) with the last ball before the drinks break to maintain the tension around the ground but despite excellent and sometimes aggressive bowling from Hamza, Andy Emery and Sam Nethery, Streejith remained calm as he worked the ball into gaps to keep the scoreboard ticking over.

Two late wickets ensured a more tense finish than the Kerala batsmen had planned but Sreejith (46no) kept his nerve to steer his side to a deserved 4 wicket victory with nine balls to spare.

The Man of the Match medal was rightly awarded to Rajesh for his match changing bowling that accounted for the top four PCC batsmen.

Runners up medals could not hide the disappointment within the PCC camp but the loss should not detract from what has been a thoroughly successful and enjoyable season.  The squad of players has improved as the season progressed and at times individuals have excelled.

“The season represents another positive step forward in the development of PCC and everyone associated with the club should be proud of their achievements”, commented the club captain and chairman, Simon Philbrook.

PCC’s next fixture is on Sunday 24th May at the Thai Polo Ground in Pattaya in a friendly against The British Club of Bangkok starting at 11am.

PCC would like to thank Pattaya Sports Club for their continued support and encourage anyone interested in joining PCC to contact the club via its website www.pattayacricketclub.com or visit the Facebook page.