At the end of the 2020/21 Summer, Premier Coach Paul O’Brien has sadly announced he will be stepping down from the role, which he held since the 2017/18 summer.
Paul will leave a legacy of being the coach that ‘broke the drought’, with the Premiers winning of the 2017/18 One Day Trophy the first championship in 24 years. In his tenure he always oversaw three ‘Championship’ 2-day titles & one One-day title. Under Paul, the Premier side also made two T20 finals and had two top 3 finishes in the 2-day competition.
However, in reflection trophies is not that Paul is most proud of his time in charge. “When I came to the club, none of the squad was in the ‘A’ program. To in that time have both Matthew & Mitchell Hay move through the ‘A’ program and realize their dream of playing for Canterbury, Jackson Latham win two contracts, Thomas Zohrab & Will O’Rourke play ‘A’ cricket, Sam Carlaw play Canterbury XI games, as well as Curtis Millard, Hugo Howard, Tom Sutherland & Tom Dunlop play u19’s has been extremely satisfying to watch unfold and assist them through their development.” Along with the high-performance development, Paul also cherishes handing out debuts to many players who could achieve a goal playing premier cricket and succeed at that level.
Paul put fun at the center of everything he did as a coach and that is something that he will treasure from this time with the squad, however he was never convinced to get onto the ‘slip n slide’.
Along with being a fantastic coach, the playing group lose a very good person who always had his men’s back and would do anything to help them succeed. Paul’s level head and wisdom has left a mark on the playing group and he has developed relationships with players that will exceed the confines of the boundary rope.
The club would like to thank Paul for his commitment & professionalism over the 4 seasons in charge and appreciate the work he has done to turn the Premier side into a regular contender for trophies in all three formats as well as developing players to achieve their goals and play representative cricket. We also acknowledge and thank his wife Sandra for letting him spend so much time with us, and we know you with both enjoy more time together between here and Wanaka.
We look forward to seeing you in and around the club in the much more relaxed role as a supporter in the coming years.