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Village go coco-nuts over Patong defeat

Legacy Phuket Gazette

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Village go coco-nuts over Patong defeat | The Thaiger

PHUKET: In a crucial Phuket Island Furniture League match, Patong and the Village faced each other at the ACG with both teams needing a win to boost their hopes of a showdown with title favorites, Laguna CC.

Undefeated so far this season, the Village knew that taking points from Patong would effectively end the reigning champions expectations of at least making another final and place themselves in strong contention to become champions.

Village support has been extraordinary all season, and this game again brought out the crowds whose vocal presence suggested that a portion of the ‘Barmy Army’ – England’s traveling cricket support faction – had left Dubai, where England are playing Pakistan, to take up temporary residence at the ACG.

It certainly made for an interesting afternoon of cricket with Village players saluting their support in the clubhouse, on taking wickets, in styles reminiscent of modern day footballers celebrating a goal. Had the ground not been so dry, a few shirtless body-slides towards the pavilion may also have been witnessed.

Having won the toss, the Village decided to take advantage of the cooler morning conditions and bat first. Kevin Quilty and Justin White opened for the Village, but Patong’s paceman, Anil Rawat sent a stump-shattering wake-up call to Quilty with his second delivery that sent alarm bells ringing throughout the Village side.

Crucial to these games is lasting the 40 overs and Martin Foster, who next came to the crease, was determined to anchor the innings. His defensive tactics prevented any further loss, and with White (22), a partnership of 36 was forged.

However, both batsmen were unable to advance the partnership or their score when a catch on the boundary by Patong’s captain Richard Folds, silenced the crowd who thought Foster’s (10) hike to square-leg off a Kishor Jhagta delivery was on its way for six. A few minutes later, White too was dismissed when Maneesh Sadarangani found a gap to bowl the opener with the score at 36 for 3.

A brief visit by Paul Stamp yielded three runs before Joshi Naresh, returning after an extended absence, trapped him lbw. This brought Tim Ross into the fray and along with Diwan Mydeen, the pair added 58 to the score. Ross blasted his way to 42 off 40 balls before being caught by Folds, again in support of Jhagta’s bowling. Ross should have been dismissed earlier, but a fumbled catch at mid-on by Mike Khan allowed his innings to continue. Mydeen’s run was ended when he was on 16, caught by Naresh off a Seemant Raju delivery.

With the score at 98 for 6, the game seemed to be in Patong’s hands. But like their dismal catching display, it soon slipped from their grasp.

Patong could have put the innings to bed at 130 had they held even later catching opportunities, in particular that of Chris Gordon who was dropped on 10. However, the tail-end not only wagged, but thrashed like a crocodile’s in a feeding frenzy, with young Gordon racing to 32 off 38 balls. Craig Patterson (11) was dropped when on 2, but recovered, and with Mark Ashman (9 not out) they both got in on the buffet to help reach a score of 172 by the end of the 37th over. Raju topped the Patong bowling figures with 3 for 36, while Jhagta took 2 for 30 and Naresh posted 2 for 32.

Slightly demoralized, Patong very soon slipped into despair when the top order collapsed for just 17 runs with Patterson and Mydeen bagging a brace each in under 20 minutes from the start of the Patong innings.

Sadarangani (15), Rawat (27) and Folds (22) hinted at a recovery, but Patterson and this time White, combined to send Patong’s hopes plummeting to a resignation of defeat.

The Village tail-end being compared to voracious predators, Patong’s lower order would have take the role of helpless prey such as waterfowl, with Noble, Jhagta and Naresh all recording ducks and Patong capitulating on 90 runs all out.

Patong’s misery ended in the 23rd over with Patterson claiming six wickets and only 17 runs conceded, his wild celebrations reflecting the importance of his contribution to the team’s win.

The Village’s 82 run victory over Patong now sees them at the top of the table with a four from four winning streak.

For more information on cricket visit phuketcricketgroup.com.

The Phuket Gazette is the Official Phuket Media Partner of the ACG.

— Neil Quail

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Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

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News

30 dolphins greet visitors to Similan Islands

Greeley Pulitzer

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30 dolphins greet visitors to Similan Islands | The Thaiger

Tourists were treated to the sight of a school of dolphins in the Similan Islands off the Phang Nga coast on Sunday.

Tour organisers said that around 30 dolphins swam close to the boat six or seven miles offshore, creating excitement for passengers. It was the first time dolphins had been seen in the vicinity since October 15.

The Similan Islands National Park director said they were bottlenose dolphins and were among several species now returning to the area following a five-year closure of the park for environmental rehabilitation. Food is again plentiful there for them, he said.

Tourists are forbidden to feed wildlife lest the free handouts alter the animals’ natural behaviour, and the park’s waters are also very sensitive to contamination from human disease and marine debris, according to the director.

SOURCE: nationthailand.com

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Patong

Phuket hotels slashing the price of rooms

The Thaiger

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Phuket hotels slashing the price of rooms | The Thaiger

by Sophie Deviller

Hotels on Thailand’s most popular holiday island are being forced to slash prices, with rooms left vacant and beaches sparse as Thailand’s tourism chiefs struggle with a plunge in Chinese visitors caused by the US trade war and a stronger baht. Phuket was the most visited destination in the country last year, after Bangkok, and a good gauge of the state of its crucial travel industry.

Tourism accounts for 18% of Thailand’s gross domestic product and Chinese holidaymakers make up more than a quarter of total arrivals. But while 2.2 million people from the country visited in 2018, according to official figures, the numbers for January-September were down almost 20% year on year.

Claude de Crissey, the French Honorary Consul in Phuket and owner of about 40 rooms in the Patong Beach area, says Chinese tourists are usually present even during the current low season.

“That was not the case this year,” he said, adding he had to lower his prices by as much as 50%.

The problem is not only in Phuket, with hotels also struggling to fill rooms in the seaside resort of Pattaya on the mainland and on Koh Samui.

Trade tensions with the US have already made some Chinese reluctant to take holidays owing to uncertainty back home, while the Thai baht has risen about 10% against the yuan this year.

A boating disaster off Phuket’s coast that killed 47 Chinese holidaymakers in July 2018 also scared some off.

“We are worried,” said an industry insider, declining to be named due to the sensitivity of the topic in a country where tourism provides tens of thousands of jobs. Adding to the headache is the fact that more than 3,000 new hotel rooms are being constructed on the island, raising the question of who will fill them.

Phuket hotels slashing the price of rooms | News by The Thaiger

“In terms of business, it’s not good,” said Kongsak Khoopongsakorn, vice-president of the association of hotels in Thailand and director of Vijitt Resort.

“Because … we have more hotels, more rooms to sell, we have more restaurants, more coffee shops.”

Still, tourism authority chairman Yuthasak Supasorn said he remained “optimistic.”

“We should reach our goal of 39.8 million foreign visitors.”

However, that is only up from 38.2 million in 2018, much less than the jump seen from the previous year’s total of 35.6 million.

Counting on India

Now hoteliers and tour package operators are targeting visitors from elsewhere, particularly India, which experts see as a huge untapped market.

A rapid expansion of the middle class in India, increased direct flights and visa-free travel have prompted Thailand to revise forecasts upwards.

It now expects two million Indian tourists this year, after an increase of nearly 25% on-year in the first seven months. But for now, the lower arrivals is evident on the streets of Phuket.

“I’ve never seen anything as bad as what it is at the moment,” said Paul Scott from Australia, who said he has been coming to Thailand for 15 years.

He mainly blamed the stronger baht for the drop-off but also the fact that Thailand wasn’t the untouched vacation paradise it once was. “Now it’s not so new … and it’s not cheap,” he said.

SOURCE: AFP

Phuket hotels slashing the price of rooms | News by The Thaiger

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Events

The 15th Mai Khao Marine Turtle fun run attracts more than 4,000 runners

The Thaiger

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The 15th Mai Khao Marine Turtle fun run attracts more than 4,000 runners | The Thaiger

4,000 runners from Thailand and overseas took part in the 15th Mai Khao Marine Turtle Fun Run and Half Marathon 2019 yesterday, starting from the Phuket Gateway.

The event is expected to raise 700,000 baht for the charity, now in its 15th year. The money raised goes towards to The Mai Khao Marine Turtle Foundation, which is committed to protecting the marine and coastal environment, and ecosystems, for the wellbeing of sea turtles that nest in the Mai Khao beach and the surrounding areas.

The annual race also provides funds for thePhuket Marine Biological Centre’s Injured Turtle Rehabilitation Program and The Third NavalArea Command’s Turtle Hatchery Program.

The race was in its 15th year and runners of all ages and abilities took part in the race. The morning’s racing was divided into five categories – the 21.1km half marathon, 10.5km mini- marathon, 5km fun run and 3k family run and VIP participants for all the races. The route of 21.1 kilometre race took runners northwest along the Haad Sai Kaew beach towards Thao Thepkasattri bridge, past the rural road No. 3006, run along the road – Pi Lai viewpoint area returned back along the T. Baan Tha Nun to the iconic Sarasin bridge before finished the half marathon in the Phuket Gateway.

For Mini Marathon 10.5 km – Over all category, Mr. Chinnawat Changlek clocked 39 minutes and 40 seconds to clinch victory in the male half marathon, winning prize money and a trophy with the signature of Phuket’s Governor. The winner in the female mini marathon was Surakarn Wanna with a time of 47 minutes and 47 seconds.

Winners also received a prize gift voucher as well as a medal. Congratulations to all participants.

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