Thailand dominate first T20I

Thailand claim series victory

Any thought that the switch to the shorter format might reduce the differences between the sides were quickly dispelled at the Royal Chiang Mai Golf Club on Tuesday, as Thailand’s women restricted the Netherlands to a disappointing 89 for eight from their 20 overs and then did not lose a wicket in knocking off the runs.

Babette de Leede elected to bat, but she and Sterre Kalis, aware perhaps of the responsibility they bear as the side’s leading run-scorers, were unable to make much impression in the initial powerplay, Nattaya Boochatham, Chanida Sutthiruang and Thipatcha Putthawong restricting them to just 21 runs for the loss of De Leede’s wicket, leg-before attempting to sweep Putthawong’s first delivery.

Kalis followed in the ninth over, also trapped in front by Onnicha Kamchomphu, and it was left to Robine Rijke, playing her most significant innings of the series so far, to hold things together as wickets continued to fall at the other end.

Most of her 33 runs came from a succession of sweep shots, although she did vary the pattern by lofting Boochatham back over her head for six, but that was her only boundary, and so great was the Thai bowlers’ domination that no four was scored in the final twelve overs of the innings.

Suleeporn Laomi and Kamchomphu were the most successful, taking three for 14 and three for 18 respectively from their four overs, while Putthawong claimed two for 14 as the spinners again exercised almost hypnotic control.

Nannapat Khoncharoenkai then picked up where she had left off in Sunday’s final ODI, and she and Natthakan Chantham proceeded serenely towards their target, despite an economical start with the new ball by Iris Zwilling and Caroline de Lange.

Once the Thai openers had found their range, however, the boundaries began to flow, and although Silver Siegers, Eva Lynch and Hannah Landheer managed to extend proceedings into the nineteenth over the Dutch attack never really looked likely to secure a breakthrough.

Khoncharoenkai finished on 44 not out from 62 deliveries and Chantham, extending her tally to 308 runs in five innings, ended with 41 from 51 with three fours and a six.

With three more T20 matches to come, the Dutch women will need to find ways of taking the attack to the Thai bowlers if they are to have a realistic chance of returning home with at least one win under their belts.

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