Teinaki has cricket at heart

Wednesday May 18, 2016 Written by Published in Cricket
At his heart … new Cook Islands Cricket chief executive officer Davis Teinaki wants to develop cricket from the grassroots level. 16051702 At his heart … new Cook Islands Cricket chief executive officer Davis Teinaki wants to develop cricket from the grassroots level. 16051702

It’s the love for cricket that drove the 36-year-old Davis Teinaki back to his roots.

 

And for the new chief executive officer of Cook Islands Cricket, it has been a memorable homecoming.

Teinaki, who left Cook Islands for New Zealand in 2010, was appointed as the head of the national cricket body following the departure of Alister Stevic earlier in the year.

In New Zealand, the former Air New Zealand employee was involved with Manukau Cricket Club, building a strong network of coaches, umpires and players within the region.

Teinaki said initially he was not interested in taking over the reins at Cook Islands Cricket but after some consideration, he decided to apply for the job.

“I thought about my family here and I thought through this job; I would be able to reconnect with them,” the all-rounder said.

“But above all, it was the love for cricket that brought me back. There is always a special place for cricket in me and I had always wanted to give back to the sport.

“This may be the best way I can help the sport that has given me so much.”

Teinaki, who hails from Pukapuka, has cricket running through his veins.

The sport was a popular activity for him and his friends back on the island.

“Back in those days, we used the cabin biscuit tin as the wicket, the coconut palm leaf (petiole) as the bat and a tennis ball.

“That’s how I started playing cricket. It became a habit. Our parents also played the sport so we followed them and learnt those basic skills.”

In 1997 when Teinaki moved to Rarotonga to complete his high school education, he joined the domestic cricket competition and subsequently got drafted into the national squad.

He was also picked in the national football squad.

“I choose cricket because I loved the sport more than soccer. I was brought up with cricket and I couldn’t let that opportunity go.”

Teinaki went on to play over 40 matches for the Cook Islands, making him one of the most capped national cricketers.

The holder of level two coaching certificate and a level two umpire’s certificate is now keen to use his experience and knowledge to help grow the sport in the Cook Islands.

“First of all, I would like to acknowledge the work Alister has done. He has done a marvelous job to bring back cricket to life, in a sense, in the Cook Islands,” the International Cricket Council qualified coach presenter said.

 “My focus is development. I want to go out to schools and spread the gospel of cricket and help grow the sport in the Cook Islands.”

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