The 20th annual Hua Hin Sixes Cricket Tournament will be held on 4th to 8th April at the grounds in front of the Dusit Thani Resort. For the uninitiated and also for cricket fans, this is a chance to see cricketers who have been past representatives of their country as well as the ‘try-hards’ in a light-hearted though competitive series of games. Apart from the games there is a strong social side to the tournament, including a Cricket Glamour Night on 6th April at the Hilton Brewery Company. Major sponsors include The Thailand Tourism Authority, Bangkok Post and TNF Cricket (Australia) Writing about cricket for the uninitiated requires explanations about many expressions that are a part of the game. Our first example, ‘Howzat’, is really a shortened version of ‘How was that?’, a shout imploring the umpire to declare a batsman dismissed. So What Are The Basics? Cricket is an outdoor bat and ball sport played between two teams. There are many books written about the laws of the game and a variety of situations that sometimes arise but basically. It’s played on a large circular or oval shaped grassed field which varies in size with a diametre of around 150 metres.
Most of the action takes place in the centre of this ground, on a rectangular strip with short grass or an artificial surface called the pitch. The pitch is 20 metres long. At each end of the pitch three upright wooden stakes, called the stumps, are hammered into the ground. Two wooden crosspieces, known as the bails, sit in grooves atop the stumps. One team bats and tries to score as the other team bowls and fields; trying to restrict the number of runs and dismiss the batters. Two batsmen play at any one time each taking a position at opposite ends of the pitch. During play a bowler delivers the ball from one end to the other with an overarm motion and a straightened arm, it cannot be thrown! The aim is either to hit the stumps or have the batsmen mishit the ball so that it is caught by a fielder. The bowler delivers 6 balls in one over before being replaced by another bowler.
The batsmen scores by scampering from one end of the pitch to the other after hitting the ball. Each time that dash is completed one run results; however a ball reaching the boundary scores 4 and a ball crossing the boundary on the full scores 6 runs. A batsman is dismissed if: The ball hits the wickets after being bowled. The ball is caught by a fielder after being hit. The ball is retrieved by a fielder and the wickets are hit with the ball before a run is completed (run out). The bowler hits the batters legs, stopping the ball from hitting the wickets (LBW – leg before wicket).
An innings is completed when all but one the batsmen (you can’t bat alone) are dismissed or the nominated number of overs has been bowled. The teams then reverse roles; the winning team is the one scoring the most runs. The Hua Hin Sixes Version of Cricket As the name ‘sixes’ suggests this version of the game (there are many others) has six members per team, 5 x 6 ball overs and only one over per bowler. A batsman can only score 35 runs before compulsory retirement. This is a fast scoring game with not many fielders out there to intercept the ball. With only one innings for each team, a game lasts for about 40 minutes. Twenty one teams will be competing for the ‘Cup’ (open), Masters (over 35 years of age) and Veterans (over 50 years of age). Last year the flags were flying for England, New Zealand, Australia, India, Bangladesh, Indonesia and of course Thailand. Footnote: We hear that this year will feature a ‘duck’s pond’. A ‘duck’ is when a batsman fails to score a run; not a good look. It seems like this year the penalty will be a visit to the ‘duck’s pond’, just to add further humiliation.