Pattaya Cricket Club travelled away from home on March 21 to the stupendous ground at the Royal Bangkok Sports Club, set in the middle of the city within a horse racing track and a golf course. There are a few ‘must see’ grounds in Thailand and this is certainly one of them. Control of the match swung between the clubs and terminated in a ball-by-ball nail-biting finish with PCC winning by 3 wickets with one ball to spare.
PCC Captain, Simon Philbrook, finally won a toss and decided to bowl. RBSC opened with Anil Tanwani and Rachen Suchakankha against Ryan Driver and Matt Harkness. The bowling was very accurate and RBSC couldn’t get away. Lots of dot balls but no wickets for the bowlers and RBSC were only 11 for 0 from 5 overs. Anil and Rachen got into Ian Liddell, Andy Emery and Wez Masterton’s bowling until Rachen fell to a catch by Andy Emery off Bernie Lamprecht for 32. 57 for 1 off 12 overs. Ittimond Poshyanonda (Captain Tong) replaced him and the score was pushed along a little quicker and by drinks, at 15 overs, RBSC were 75 for 1.
Tong was forced to retire on 22 due to the effects of heat in the 20th over at 108 for 2. Ryan and Matt returned to the attack but they were expensive. Manish Agrawal was LBW for a Golden Duck to Matt Harkness but Anil was pushing up the run rate with Kaviraaj Sachdev and it didn’t help that PCC had lost their catching hands. Anil was dropped by Andy and Matt which proved costly, but he was finally caught in the last over when he skied a ball to the keeper, Dan Allen, for 71. Kaviraaj was 19 not out and RBSC had set a challenging 157 for 4. RBSC were confident of a win.
PCC opened their batting with Wez Masterton and Matt Harkness against Arvinder Sachdev and Princy Singh. They bowled their 5 overs straight through, hoping to pressurise PCC into making mistakes down the order – it almost worked. Wez started well in the first over but was soon caught by Arvinder Sachdev in the slips for 10. Ryan Driver and Matt put on runs steadily and at a rate just a little faster than RBSC. Matt was caught and bowled by Princy for 22 in the 10 over – 54 for 2 and nothing in it.
Luke Stokes continued in the same vein against Zan Copleston, a 12-year-old wicket keeper and spin bowler, and Happy. At drinks, PCC were 81 for 2 and only just ahead, but needed to pick up the pace set by Anil. RBSC had also appeared to have lost their catching hands as Ryan was dropped twice, by Happy and Anil, before he was bowled for 51 by Happy. 123 for 3 after 20 and PCC were still ahead, but about to lose wickets and make things very interesting.
Manish Agrawal was bowling well and had Luke Stokes caught by Happy for 27 and now 127 for 4. Simon Wetherell and Dan Allen upped the run rate with desperately needed boundaries and kept PCC in the game until Simon was caught by Japinder Singh off Zan Copleston for a speedy 16. 18 needed off the last 2 overs and Simon Philbrook went out, but not for long before he took a risky second and got run out, but one run counted. Andy Emery did exactly the same thing, but 9 runs from the over and it was left to Bernie Lamprecht and Dan Allen in the last over.
RBSC brought on a new bowler, Kaviraaj Singh Sachdev, 2 byes and Bernie hit a 4. 3 from three required and the fielders close in. Dan gets a 3 off the penultimate ball and PCC score 158 for 7 and sneak a win by 3 wickets. Dan finished on 12 not out whilst Bernie scored 5.
PCC are second in the Bangkok League and looking for a top 4 finish to get into the finals, set for late April.
PCC will be playing at Pattana Sports Resort on 28 March against Bangkok CC 2 at 1 pm. Come along and watch; there’s food, cold drinks, good cricket and friendly people.
Author’s note: Correction to PCC social match report v Koh Chang. It was not Trevor Moolman that scored 15 & 9, then bowled 0 for 22 (including an over of illegitimate balls – a bastard over) and 2 for 4. It was his son, Gary, who’d been allowed out without parental supervision.