One of the leading figures of the past decade for the Herts Falcons, Cris Hiche, has decided to step down as the manager of the team.
Hiche originally joined the Falcons ahead of the 2012 season, and helped to push them to unprecedented levels of success. The team reached the playoff finals that year, and lost in six games to the Harlow Nationals. His first four seasons with Herts proved to be among the best in the club’s history and included reaching the NBL playoffs in three out of these four seasons, and semi-finals in 2013 and 2015.
Hiche’s outstanding performances in this period were recognised with the award of the NBL Outfield Gold Glove in 2012 and 2013, when he did not commit a single error. In 2013 he was also the Falcons’ home run leader.
After a year playing in the Austrian league in 2016, Cris Hiche returned to Herts. By 2018 he had become the manager, and once again led the Falcons to success. An impressive post-season run – in which he was now a successful starting pitcher – saw the team return to the NBL finals against the Mets.
The London side swept the finals series, but there was another aspect to this achievement – Herts had qualified for Europe for the first time in their history. In the summer of 2019, Hiche’s Falcons played in Blagoevgrad in Bulgaria in the European Federations Cup. They secured a win against the Lithuanian side, Utenos Titanai, and indulged in a famous rain-soaked streak. Don’t worry, we won’t share pictures of Cris in his undercrackers.
The Chilean has also been instrumental off the field for Herts for many years. He joined the club’s executive board as the head of the Under-17 and Under-19 programmes. In 2013 he led the Herts Under-17 team to the National Final finishing as runners-up which is the club’s best position in that age group. He has also served in posts including facilities manager and overseen training programmes for all levels.
Cris had to step away from managing in 2021 for family reasons, and has now decided not to return in 2022. Herts wishes him all the best for what comes next, and we still hope to see him return to the club to drive more success in years to come.