Shiplake College has appointed top local cricket coach Chris Ellison as its first Director of Cricket.
Chris has worked with Shiplake as a performance cricket coach since 2005, however this new role will take cricket to the next level at the College with the support and expertise of Paul McCraw, the College’s Head of Cricket, Director of Sport Dan Bradley and Head of Girls’ Sport Chloe Mordue.
Chris’ mantra in his new role will be ‘cricket for all at Shiplake’, ensuring inclusivity and enjoyment for all players from beginners fresh out of primary school in Year 7 with no experience, to talented cricketers looking to move to the next level in the game.
Cricket will be enjoyed all year round with indoor coaching sessions in the winter months, preparing pupils for the summer term.
And with Shiplake going fully co-educational from Year 7 in 2023, Chris along with Head of Girls’ Sport, Chloe Mordue, will be developing the girls’ cricket programme from Year 7 as well as for the Sixth Form girls.
Chris will also work on a community outreach scheme where he will visit local prep and primary schools to showcase Shiplake Cricket culminating in prep and primary school festivals next summer.
Chris said: "I’m looking forward to seeing the pupils working hard at their games and enjoying the fruits of this investment next summer with improved performances and winning matches for the College.
"Shiplake College in the summer months with its amazing facilities is a wonderful environment to deliver a cricket coaching programme in.
He continued: "Personally, I’m delighted to be part of it."
"With this role I’m confident we can help take Shiplake College’s cricket and status to bigger and better things."
Shiplake’s Head of Cricket, Paul McCraw played for Scotland through the youth levels, and when working overseas played league cricket in Hong Kong and state cricket in Malaysia.
More recently he played at Henley CC with Chris before shifting his focus to running cricket at Shiplake and working with the 1st XI.
Paul said of the appointment: "Chris is an excellent coach who has played a leading role in the development of cricket here at the College for many years.
"Having him formally appointed as our Director of Cricket will give him the opportunity to identify talented cricketers at an early age and then support their development through the years.
"We believe that we have a lot of untapped potential here at the College and that over time we can increase participation in the game, become a leading cricket school and produce more players who go on to play senior and county cricket."
Director of Sport, Dan Bradley added: "This appointment brings opportunities for pupils to play cricket more often, all year round.
"Chris is one of the highest level coaches in the area and his expertise will help pupils to further their cricketing ability.
"I look forward to seeing our teams as strong as ever moving into the summer season as a result of this appointment."
Cricket has got off to a great start this term with lunchtime sessions for both junior and senior players focusing on perfecting their skills ready for the 2022 cricket season.