Adair replaces Baston as Hastings’ number two

Stephen Adair. INLT 23-805-CON
Stephen Adair. INLT 23-805-CON

Just two years after stepping down as Larne Tech manager Stephen Adair is back at Dennis Harvey Park as assistant to boss Johnny Hastings.

In the 2011-12 season, Adair, a former Larne goalkeeper, was part of the Tech management team along with Stuart Pike and Jeff Russell.

It proved to be an unforgettable campaign which culminated in the Old Boys securing that second Division 1A promotion slot.

Russell stepped aside during the close season, leaving Adair and Pike as joint-managers until two became one when Pike resigned.

At the time, it was a joint resignation, but Stephen had second thoughts and for the remainder of the campaign, he was in sole charge.

However, Adair did step down during the summer of 2013 due to his work commitments.

Now back at the club, Adair will fill the shoes of Clifford Baston.

Baston told the Times: “I’m just so busy with work, I could only commit about 50 per cent and that’s no use to anybody. For me, I need to be in something 100 per cent or nothing.

“I will still be involved with Larne Tech. I’ve joined the football committee, just to keep my hand in.

“This could be beneficial, with the committee now having someone who has been so close to the team for the last couple of years.”

Baston expressed his appreciation to the club for the plaque he was presented with at the recent awards night.

Hastings extended thanks to Baston for all his efforts, adding: “He came up with me from the Seconds and along with coach Niall Curneen, the three of us worked very well together. But once I heard Clifford had to give it up, Stephen Adair was the logical replacement.”

And for the first time since he resigned, Adair is back working in the country. As he told the Times: “I had been working across the water and then down south. When Johnny asked me, it was a no-brainer; he’s a good friend of mine.

“Larne Tech is a well-run club and I’ve a lot of respect for Johnny and the job he’s done. He’s really enhanced the squad, he’s well thought of, and a good manager.

“I’ve watched them [Larne Tech] maybe the last half-dozen games at the end of last season. If we keep our best players injury-free, we’re adding to the squad to get more strength in depth, then there’s no reason why we can’t have a serious go at promotion.”