Report by Richard Lockwood, CAT

Thailand faced Malaysia in the play-off for seventh and eighth places in the ACC Under 19 Elite Cup at AIT. Thailand captain Vichanath Singh won the toss and chose to bat in damp conditions that had caused the start to be delayed by half an hour.

Thailand lost a wicket in the second over when Witsanukorn Thapthimthai was caught at slip from the bowling of Hazrul Zainal and the home side never really recovered from a disappointing start. Thailand one for one.

Thailand lost their second wicket when Daniel Leach could only fend a ball from Derek Duraisingham the wicket-keeper Zubair Asyraf and he was out for 10 to leave the score on 15 for 2 in the fifth over.

Thailand's brave decision to bat first quickly seemed to have backfired as the third wicket fell with the score on 16 in just the sixth over, as Weerachai Maneerat was lbw to Mohammad Hazrul.

The home side’s innings was in ruins as wickets continues to fall. Ishan Kalra tried to hit his way out of trouble but couldn't clear mid-off as the total slipped to 26 for 4 in the ninth over.

Just as Thailand were looking to consolidate their innings, another wicket was given away as Pranav Parakh was run out for 12 to leave the score on 35 for 5 in the 15th over.

Thailand were five down at drinks and the procession of wickets continued as Jai Bhagwat was caught at slip and Vichanath Singh caught and bowled as off-spinner Pavithren Nadaesan took two wickets in quick succession. The 50 came up in the 24th over, but with seven wickets down Thailand's lower order had a fight on their hands.

Better news for Thailand came as the batsmen realised that runs had to be added to the score, as Yotsakorn Chaiprom hit a pair of boundaries to raise hopes at AIT. The revival soon stalled as Chaiprom hit the ball straight up in the air to be caught at mid-wicket and the eighth wicket fell with the score on 76.

The innings subsided quickly as Kushal Shah's long innings came to an end. He could only fend the ball to short cover as he was ninth out on 83 but at least he had made the top score of 18.

The last wicket partnership only lasted three balls and did not produce a run as Thailand were bowled out for a disappointing total 83 in 35.1 over. Aman Dubey was last out as he gave Derek Duraisingham some simple catching practice.

Mohammad Hazrul had the best figures with three for 27, as Thailand struggled badly with the bat. 83 looked a low score but the home side have the bowling attack to trouble Malaysia.

Vichanath Singh will have to be Thailand's match-winner as he is one of the leading wicket-takers in the tournament with his slow left-arm spin. He bowled the second over of the Malaysia innings and struck immediately as he trapped Zubair Asyraf caught at slip with the total on 4.

Ishan Kalra was given three overs with the new ball but we soon had spin at both ends with the introduction of Jai Bhagwat to bowl his off breaks.

Another bowling change as Daniel Leach replaced Jai Bhagwat. Running in hard he started with three wides but then found a good line to have Adam Zulkifi caught at second slip for five as Malaysia were 24 for 2 in the ninth over.

Vichanath Singh was again bowling beautifully with figures of 5 overs, 4 maidens, 1 run and 1 wicket, but it was Daniel Leach who made another breakthrough as Keithan Goonasagaram was caught behind for 8. Malaysia were 27 for 3 from 10 overs.

Daniel Leach is bowling his heart out and almost took a wicket as an attempted pull almost carried to mid-on. Jai Bhagwat replaced Vichanath Singh for one over, but the captain returned to bowl his fifth maiden in six overs.

Daniel Leach bowled an expensive fourth over before Jai Bhagwat was asked to bowl the last over before lunch and he gave Malaysia plenty of food for thought by having Syahadat caught at mid-wicket for 12. Malaysia were 48 for 4 at lunch with 36 more runs required for victory.

Jai Bhagwat finished his over after lunch and Kushal Shah was given a chance with his left-arm spin. Time was running out for Thailand so Vichanath will have to come back soon to complete his 10 overs.

Vichanath returned and gave away his second run in his seventh over, beating the bat twice to no avail. Jai Bhagwat bowled a full toss which was despatched for four as the other Thailand bowlers lacked the control shown by Vichanath.

Another run off Hunny's bowling and it's the turn of Siddhant Anand to have a bowl. Could he support his captain? No he started with five wides.

Malaysia's batsmen have a cunning plan to keep out Vichanath and to look for runs from the other end. The plan is working well. Hunny was on his way to another maiden when Fikri Makram spoilt his figures by hitting him for four over mid on to take Malaysia close to victory.

Malaysia duly won the play-off for seventh and eighth places by six wickets with pressure only being exerted on their batsmen by Vichanath Singh who conceded only seven runs in his nine overs. Fikri Makram finished on 29 and Ahmed Norharif on 10.

Thailand never really recovered from losing early wickets against the new ball in difficult batting conditions. A total of 83 was never enough to give the excellent Vichanath Singh the chance to spin his side to victory.

ACC U-19 Elite Cup 2011

7th/8th Playoff: Thailand v Malaysia at AIT, Bangkok
Thailand won the toss and chose to bat
Thailand: 83 all out off 35.1 overs (H.Zainal 3-27)
Malaysia: 84 for 4 off off 23.3 overs
Man of the Match: Hazrul Zainal (Malaysia)

Photos by Sirinan Khomlone

Tournament page

Filed February 9th, 2011