Horseshoe Point was the venue for Pattaya Cricket Club to host Richard Harvey’s famous touring team from England ‘Not The MCC’ in a 32 over game, played as two 16 over matches combined. The format was as successful as the outcome with PCC winning off the final ball by 2 runs.
It had been seven years since NTMCC last visited Thailand and a time when cricket did not exist in Pattaya. “It is fantastic to see such a facility available here in Pattaya and a credit to all those involved in making PCC the success it is today” said Paul Capleton the NTMCC captain.
The umpires Kim ‘Trigger’ Fletcher and Headmaster Roger conducted the coin toss with the captains Simon and Paul, and NTMCC elected to bowl first in overcast conditions that looked conducive to swing. And so it proved as the opening bowlers moved the ball in both directions and posed many an uncertain moment for the batsmen.
Dan soon went caught behind for 7 and was quickly followed by Debdas as PCC reached 30 for 2 from the first 6 overs. Usman’s breezy 16 maintained the run rate but it was Hansie’s 49 and Simon’s 13 ball 27 not out that ensured PCC attained a respectable 123 for 6 from their 16 overs.
Hansie was destined not to reach his half century as Trigger called one run short when on 48 and then gave him out on the next delivery, the seventh ball of the over! Andy was out for a golden duck.
In reply the NTMCC openers Gandahl (53 retired) and Matty (17) got the innings off to a flying start and Salman (22no) continued the momentum to finish with 126 for 3, a lead of just 3 runs. Andy’s 4 overs went for 41 runs as he dished up some very tasty buffet bowling.
PCC’s second innings was an altogether more dominant display as nearly all the batsmen contributed heavily. Debdas (53 no) was the mainstay as Dan (25), Mithu (27) and Hansie (20) all found the boundary with regularity to reach 147 for 6 and a combined total of 270. Andy was out for his second golden duck of the day and he was now wondering why he had even bothered to get out of bed.
Needing a challenging 145 to win, NTMCC were certainly up for it as Prasad (34) and Gandahl (40) launched into the PCC bowling. The onslaught was temporarily halted by Usman who loosened a few teeth of Vinny as he attempted to hook a short ball and succeeded in only leaving a pool of claret at the side of the wicket and requiring 3 stitches to the inside of his mouth.
NTMCC were in the ascendency and on course for victory until Simon brilliantly ran out Prasad with one stump to aim at and then held a wonderful running catch on the boundary to see the back of Gandahl. Andy dropped a catch at deep mid wicket to add to his woes.
With 18 runs needed from the final over to be bowled by Debdas it seemed PCC had the game under control. Salman had other ideas as he stuck 2 sixes over long on and 3 runs were needed from the last delivery. A full straight yorker could only be hit for one run and a very relieved but elated PCC (except Andy – who thankfully did not bowl) accepted the handshakes and retired to the beer tent for a deserved ice cold libation. Andy, without so much as a whimper, duly packed the team kit bag.
The game was played in a tremendous spirit with everyone agreeing the format was hugely successful and should be played more often. “PCC have been wonderful hosts and are a credit to the game of cricket. To play in such beautiful surroundings is a privilege and NTMCC will certainly look forward to their next overseas visit to Thailand and Pattaya” commented Richard Harvey the NTMCC’s Chairman.
Details of all PCC’s fixtures and events are available on the club’s website www.pattaya cricketclub.com.