Herts Baseball Club has announced the addition of Ian Byers to its coaching staff. He joins the 2013 Under-17 national championship runners-up, Herts Harriers, as the team’s Strength and Conditioning coach.
Away from his work as a director of a multi-award winning development company, Byers is manager to Team GB Speedway international, Lewis Bridger, and he also works with London 2012 Paralympic Gold Medallist and World Champion, Hannah Cockroft, who was one of the 10 nominees for the BBC’s 2013 Sports Personality of the Year award, which was presented last week. He previously worked with Team GB sprinter Marlon Devonish, who went on to win the gold medal in the 4x100m relay in the 2004 Olympic Games held in Athens.
Apart from involvement in sports management, he has also competed for Team GB in the European Individual Veterans Fencing Championship in Italy earlier this year, although a serious motorcycle accident has since halted his progress.
His appointment with the coaching staff of the Herts Harriers is the first step in a long-term plan for Byers to develop as a baseball coach and, in due course, take up a role as a manager of one of the Herts teams. He comes with a cricket background, but after experiencing the excitement of MLB he has decided to make the transition to baseball. Byers has already started to work closely with Herts Harriers manager, Cris Hiche, and the rest of the U17 coaching staff as they plan for Spring Training and a very important season ahead for the team.
Ian said “I have been very impressed with the professional approach to sport that I have already experienced at Herts and I would like to thank to Aspi for his support and encouragement, along with Liam Carroll at BSUK for allowing me to attend some of the Academy training sessions. I am excited by the opportunity to work with Cris and the Harriers this year and I believe that as long as we all work hard the team can go one better than last season”.
“We are very pleased that our club, and British baseball, is able to attract highly-qualified people like Ian” said Herts President, Aspi Dimitrov. He added that “Ian’s professional approach and experience at the highest level will bring great value to the club”.
The Harriers now have coaching staff of seven which is the highest of any team in the British baseball leagues. It is even higher than the Great Britain Senior National Team and may soon be competing with the coaching staff numbers of MLB teams.