Home Sport GAA A decision on the new Laois hurling manager to made shortly

A decision on the new Laois hurling manager to made shortly

Michael Ryan, John McEvoy and Arien Delaney are among the names linked to the vacant Laois manager's position

A decision as to who will be appointed as the new Laois senior hurling manager is expected to be made within the next two weeks.

It’s believed that the selection committee comprised of Eamon Jackman, Niall Rigney and Declan Conroy have already begun interviewing potential candidates following Eamonn Kelly’s decision to step down following the end of Laois’s championship campaign back in June.

“Interviews began last week, and a decision is expected to be made within the next fortnight,” a source said.

Among those believed to be in contention are Michael Ryan, the former Waterford manager who recently stepped down as the Westmeath boss, Camross’s Arien Delaney and Clough-Ballacolla native John McEvoy.

Michael Ryan, who managed his native Waterford in 2012 and 2013, stepped down from his role with Westmeath earlier this month after four years in charge.

Under his tenure, Westmeath reached the Allianz League Division 2A final and and upset the odds with a three-point win over Laois in the first round of the Joe McDonagh Cup. 

They later reached the final of that competition but, just like the Division 2A final, were once again defeated by Carlow.

Another man we believe could be in contention for the role is Arien Delaney, who won two championships with Camross during his five years at the helm. He stepped down after last year’s success and is now involved in a coaching capacity with Shinrone in Offaly.

One of the other names mentioned has been that of former Laois hurler and Dublin U-21 manager John McEvoy.

McEvoy played with Laois for a spell in the early Noughties and was part of the Clough-Ballacolla panel that won their first county title in 2009.

He became involved with the Dublin hurling scene through his work as a teacher at the Marian College in Ballsbridge and as well as managing the Dublin U-21 team to the 2011 All Ireland final he also served as a selector under Anthony Daly. In 2012 he took over as Ballacolla manager mid season and guided them to a county final where they were defeated by Rathdowney-Errill after a replay.

At a recent meeting of Laois County Board, Rathdowney-Errill delegate Mick Fitzpatrick said that “whether we like to say it or not, Laois hurling is in a very low place right now”.

“Do lads not have a love of Laois anymore,” he asked. “Is there a problem that clubs won’t send players in? We all love Laois but until we knock our heads together we’re going nowhere.”

The Laois hurlers finished fourth of six teams in this season’s inaugural Joe McDonagh Cup. They were beaten by Westmeath, Kerry and Carlow but got the better of Meath and Antrim to avoid getting dragged into a relegation playoff.

SEE ALSO – Updated Laois club hurling rankings after the first round of action

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