Halstead Cricket Club are delighted to confirm the appointment of Chris Rayner as Club Coach.
Chris has spent his entire cricketing career at Star Stile and will take up the mantle of coaching and support to members of all ages and levels. He will become a member of the Cricket Committee and an officer of the Club.
Chairman Mark Surridge is thrilled with the appointment. ‘We are enjoying a good start to the season with all four sides having success and are fortunate to have a rapidly growing membership in our Junior Section. This is in no small part due to the coaching framework we have put in place, with Director of Cricket Phil Toogood and now Chris Rayner as Club Coach’.
Rayner comes from a cricketing family at Halstead, with his father Billy and elder brother Tim both having played for the club and his mother Janet frequently on hand to provide excellent teas.
Stuart Berger, Club President made his debut in the same side as Bill. ‘It is no exaggeration that I have known the Rayner family all of my Halstead CC “life”’.
‘Over the years, Bill and Janet have raised three fine boys, and Chris has grown up into a fantastically valuable member of our Club. He’s very comfortable working with all age groups, but in particular very much at home with the younger lads who are willing to learn.’
‘I fully support the appointment of Chris to this coaching position, not least because like all the Rayner family, he has Halstead Cricket Club engraved on his heart.’
As a youngster, Chris says he grew up watching the successful side of the 1990s. Phil Toogood’s side contained stalwarts such as Neale Dakin, John Clinch, Paul Harris, Robert Gregg and Richard Pybus.
Some of Rayner’s earliest cricketing memories are from a childhood spent at Star Stile, be it watching his father cutting the outfield on the old grey tractor or playing cricket with his brothers against the white picket fence.
Rayner’s earliest playing memory was as a ten year old with the Colts [now Juniors] on Morton’s Meadow. ‘Lloyd Rayner encouraged me to take up the game. I remember I hit two boundaries to win a game against Sudbury and I’ve never forgotten that!’
Rayner made his First Eleven debut as a wicket keeper in the Toogood side. ‘I remember late in the game Phil came back on to bowl. I stood back and he promptly called me up to the stumps. First he bowled a bouncer, which I amazingly took, then he fired one down the leg side, which eluded me and went for four byes and Toogy gave me the glare for missing a stumping!’.
He has been an ever present since then and enjoyed the competitive cricket in the East Anglian Premier League, seeing first-hand the level he wished to attain as a club cricketer. Since then Chris completed his teacher training and has taken his Coaching badges, ‘My heart has always been in teaching and coaching sports’.
Phil Toogood gave his own glowing testimony. ‘I’ve been lucky enough to get to know Chris and the whole Rayner family over my years at the club. One thing that stands out for me is the passion they all share for Halstead Cricket Club’.
‘The club always comes first with Chris. He is constantly engaging with club members and exploring methods and means to help others with their self-development. People like Chris Rayner are the future of our great club’.
‘Chris does an enormous amount of work for Halstead in so many different ways. He is Head Coach at the Halstead Juniors training on Friday nights and has developed coaching programmes that take children from beginners - playing soft ball ‘Kwik Cricket’ - through the transitional stages to hard ball and on to adult cricket.’
‘Similarly Chris runs the Club’s Thursday training nights with a richly varied programme, focusing on technical development, strength and conditioning, and fitness programmes, with specialist advice on rehabilitation after injuries.’
‘Outside Halstead Chris does a great deal of work for special needs children, which is a true credit to where his passion lies, that is with helping others.’