CHIANG MAI SIXES
Rathod on target for Awali
Chiang Mai _ The third day of the 19th Chiang Mai International Cricket Sixes, being played in beautiful conditions at the Gymkhana cricket ground, opened with a roar as Sanjay Rathod of the Awali Taverners hit the ''Big 10'' sign at the end of the ground, scoring 10 extra runs for the team and 3,000 baht for the junior cricket fund from the sign sponsors STEC. His well-placed missive helped the Bahrain's Awali Taverners reach 86/0, (with Sanjay's 37 ret and R. Bowshaw 34 ret) to the UK Drifters 78/1 (Neil Howe 33 n.o).
The Perth Postels came into their own on day three by downing the Taranaki Taverners 46/0 to 44/3.
The Gloucestershire Gipsies , with a great innings of 88 for no loss of wicket (Paul Lazenbury, 34 n.o) defeated Sa Pa 36/2. Silver State crashed at 29/4 to the Bangladeshi Cricketeers 31/0 (Khaled Mahmud, 31 n.o).
The next major game was between the Camel Bar Humps who scored 36/0 (between stumps, that was, not humps) defeating the Bangkok Postels 34/3 and Landlord Kim Fletcher's team the Jameson Malakas 69/1 defeated the Gymkhana Cavaliers (68/0).
The first round of the Cup pitted the Cricketeers _ playing and winning their second game of the day _ 78/4 against the Gloucestershire Gipsies who took a plunge at 58/3, after winning their earlier game.
In the next Cup round, the Moonshine Warathais 97/1 (Steve ''Crunch'' Christie 34 ret) made quick work of Yarrambat 53/2 (Gavin Shaw, 30 ret).
The third Cup round of the afternoon, saw the Ashwell Crusaders 85/2 (Jon Powell, 33 ret.) beat the Surrey Vagrants72/1 (Mark Higgs, 30 ret).
The last Cup game saw the Perth Postels secure an entry into the finals, downing the Sugar Shack Postels 86/0 (Cameron Park, 35 ret). Sugar Shack managed 59/4 (James Billington, 33 n.o.).
It was then a battle of the Postels in the final Cup round, with Perth on 86/0 (Cameron Park 35 ret, Stuart Kaschula 29 n.o) to defeat Sugar Shack 59/4 (James Billington, 33 ret)
As the sun began to set over the charming Gymkhana Ground, Silver State 94/2 lead the onslaught in the Shield 94/2 (Simon Philbrook, 32 ret) to defeat the Southerners 80/1 (Peter Goodchap 34 ret, Saurabn Dhanuka, 30 ret).
A draw followed between the Shanghai Dragons 92/3 (G. Silva, 33 ret, Chad Blewitt, 33 ret) and the Divine Felons 92-0 (Peter Watson, 35 ret, Ross Ormiston, 30 ret).
Then, in one of the most exciting games of the series, the Awali Taverners needed four runs from the last ball to beat the Tokyo Wombats.
The erstwhile hero from the morning, Sanjay Rathod, belted a massive six to hand the Taverners victory 81/0 to 78/1 (Rathos, 32 n.o, R Buultjens, 31 n.o.) Tokyo Wombats (Andy Hall 33 ret).
As the light faded and the spectators _ especially the press and media corps _ fading even faster, the last Shield Game of the day saw a very close finish with Jamesons Dilettantes 68/0 (Roger Weckert, 33 ret.) easing past the Irish Pub Gang Green 67/2.
Action continues today with the divisional tournament and this evening's famous ''Pig Picking'' extravaganza.