17:50 local time – we’ve just had confirmation from the ICC that the match is abandoned. Bitterly disappointing for Thailand, who powered to their highest-ever T20I total.
17:11 local time: still raining, with no end in sight, and we’re starting to lose overs now. Official word is that they need to start by 18:03 or it’s called off.
Some stats while we wait – Pakistan’s highest-ever successful chase in female T20Is was 139/7 against South Africa in Pietermaritzburg last year, while their best-ever second innings total was 144/5 in a losing cause against England in Kuala Lumpur late last year. So to beat Thailand they’ll need to do better than ever before on several counts… if they get back on the field, that is.
Innings break. Well well well. Thailand in a great position to pull off an upset here, posting the highest T20I total ever at Sydney Showground. Pakistan with a stiff ask, especially considering bowling has been Thailand’s strength in the past. Bismah Maroof missing is a big blow, so stand-in skipper Javeria Khan has a lot of responsibility at the top of the order.
Over 20.0 – Thailand 150/3. New batter Kamchomphu gets her side to the milestone as she thumps Nida over her head and the Thai batters scramble 2 on the arm of deep mid-off.
Over 19.4 – wicket, bowled! Chanida goes, attempting to slog Nida across the line, doesn’t connect and the stumps light up. Can Thailand reach 150?
Over 19.0 – Thailand 146/2. Thailand build on the boundaries with singles off the rest of the over. This is already their highest T20I score (beating 133 against the Netherlands last year) and a significant improvement over their only other match against Pakistan (in 2018) where they scored 67/8.
Over 18.2 – Two boundaries! Anam returns and slides legside and Nannapat plays a delicate fine sweep then an elegant flick through backward square.
Over 18.0 – Thailand 134/2. Nida back on. Javeria hoping she can suck the momentum out of Thailand’s innings, but they find the gaps and run hard, with punches through off and a sweep to leg. Then a boundary! Chanida leans forward and throws the kitchen sink at one outside off, carves it through forward-point to the rope.
Over 17.0 – Thailand 125/2. Omaima back, and another boundary! Feeds Nannapat a legside full toss, and she’s able to sweep it away fine.
Over 16.0 – Thailand 116/2. Chantham works a full-length delivery back straight, and Diana take an excellent catch falling to her right off her own bowling. Nattakan departs for 56 and visible sigh of relief from Diana. Nannapat Koncharoenkai (RHB) new batter.
Over 15.1 – boundary! Diana back on serves up a full toss to Chanida, who gets low and sweeps to the midwicket rope.
Over 15.0 – Thailand 108/1. Aroob back on, and Nattakan Chantham brings up her 50! Sweeps a boundary to the fence to become the first Thai to reach a World Cup half-century. Hugs and smiles with new batter Chanida Suttiruang.
Over 14.0 – Thailand 100/1. Hundred up for Thailand as Chantham gets 4 more! Anam feeds her a juicy full toss outside off and has no trouble cover-driving that to the rope.
Over 13.3 – wicket, caught! Anam Amin back into the attack and dismisses Boochatham! Attempts another big hit over the bowler’s head but can’t get enough on it, Aliya camps at long on and completes the catch. Nattaya looks filthy with herself in the dugout.
Over 13.0 – Thailand 92/0. Omaima continues and two more to the rope! Chantham crushes it through cover then Omaima overcorrects to leg and is thwacked through square leg. Excellent batting here and Thailand looking good.
Over 12.0 – Thailand 83/0. Aliya Riaz back on with right-arm seamers. Charging in almost from the fielding circle and Thailand use the pace to push into the deep. Running hard, and a slower ball keeps a little low. That will interest Thailand’s bowlers later on. Boundary to finish! Chantham again through off! Carves it over cover and the diving fielder can’t quite reign it in.
Over 11.0 – Thailand 73/0. Omaima Sohail into the attack with more offspin. Interesting decision to replace Dar, but gets an economical over. She’s tossing up and getting a bit of dip, but Thailand not taking the bait as yet. They push hard on the singles rather than slogging unnecessarily.
Over 10.0 – Thailand 70/0. Aroob again, and two more boundaries! Chantham reaches forward and thumps yet another cover drive over the infield, then unfurls her legside game with a powerful sweep shot as Aroob serves up a full toss.
Over 9.0 – Thailand 60/0. Dar continues, and Javeria shuffles the field to deny the easy runs through cover-point. Thailand instead pushing it to the outfield. Good batting, as the flying start has forced the field to open up for singles.
Over 8.0 – Thailand 57/0. Legspinner Aroob Shah into the attack now. Busy, hustling action. Thailand milking the spread field as they knock it to the women on the rope down the ground, then a boundary! Aroob tosses it up and Boochatham tucks in with a drive over cover to the rope.
Over 7.0 – Thailand 50/0. Star offspinner Nida Dar into the attack as the powerplay ends, and hustles through a containing over. Significantly better lines this time, as the only run comes from a punch to off.
Over 6.0 – Thailand racing here at 49/0. Boochatham almost has Thailand’s second six of the tournament as she launches Riaz back over her head, high and handsome. Then carves another four with a wristy shot through cover-point.
Over 5.1 – another boundary! Chantham with arguably the shot of the day as Aliya Riaz steams in with right-arm seamers and drifts down leg. Nattaya with a gorgeous pickup to help it on the way to the rope and fine leg has no chance.
Over 5.0 – Thailand 35/0. Boochatham into the action as she charges Diana and lofts it back over her head. Doesn’t quite get all of it and they run 2. Then two boundaries! Takes a step down the track and muscles it through midwicket, then again steps down and thumps a drive over mid-off. Thailand dugout loving this start.
Over 4.0 – Thailand 25/0. Chantham on fire! Takes four boundaries off the hapless Anam, who keeps feeding her strong offside game and they go flying through the cover region. Lovely cricket here.
Over 3.0 – Thailand 9/0. Diana more accurate this over as Boochatham punches off the back foot through cover.
Over 2.0 – Thailand 7/0. Chantham off the mark with a boundary! Glorious cover drive as Anam Amin’s left-arm orthodox provides a juicy half-volley and put away.
Over 1.0 – Thailand 3/0. Diana strays down leg several times but the Thais can’t put her away. Ends with a dropped chance! Boochatham drives away from her body and edges it but drops short of first slip.
15:00 – Players on the field now. Thai openers Natthakan Chantham (RHB) and Nattaya Boochathan (LHB) make their way to the middle and Diana Baig warms up with the new ball.
14:55 – Smoke blanketing the ground as some perfunctory-looking fireworks and flamethrowers go off to entertain the approximately 17-strong crowd. Players presumably coughing the anthems now.
14:45 – Welcome one, welcome all to Thailand’s final match at this T20 World Cup. Sornnarin Tippoch wins the toss and elects to bat first. A little rain around, hopefully nothing too disruptive.
I was watching parts of this game on TV, so check out over 16 again. Unfortunately Diana did not take an excellent catch as described in your blog. … As I was able to replay, unlike as shown on the TV coverage, I confirmed my suspicion that the ball actually hit Diana’s hand & dropped sharply to the wicket & immediately bounced straight back into her hand. Given her hand was close to the pitch this happened very quickly and needed close obversation to notice. … Can’t be sure if Diana realised this but I suspect it would be something you would know. So her poker faced reaction fooled all, including the broadcasters who failed to check out the catch closely, as would have been the case in the men’s game.
Interesting comment. Without having access to replays of the catch I can’t say for certain, but live at the ground there was no suggestion among observers that it had bounced, and we also had replays on the day; I don’t recall finding it suspicious at the time.