Tipperary native Willie Maher is the new Laois hurling manager for the 2023 season, ending the search that goes back to Seamas ‘Cheddar’ Plunkett’s resignation in mid-June.
From Ballingarry, Maher is the current manager of the Bennetsbridge senior team in Kilkenny and is a former Tipperary minor and U-21 manager.
He was also previously involved with Waterford as a selector under Derek McGrath and with the Cuala senior hurlers in Dublin, whom he won Dublin county finals with in 2019 and 2020.
Laois GAA confirmed the appointment on social media this evening which was ratified by a meeting of the county board executive.
A four-man group comprising Laois GAA chairman PJ Kelly, hurling chairman Mattie Collier, Richie Kennedy and David O’Brien had been tasked with the role of finding a successor to Plunkett who had been in charge in 2021 and 2022.
Maher, who captained his county to an All Ireland minor title in 1996, is the latest Tipperary man taking on the Laois managerial role following on from the likes of Babs Keating, Dinny Cahill, Paudie Butler and Eamonn Kelly.
Laois will once again play in the Joe McDonagh Cup next year having been relegated from the Leinster championship this season.
However they will be in Division 1 of the National League which will be be a big bonus to the new management.
As of yet there is no word of a backroom team though it is believed that former Waterford great Dan Shanahan is in the reckoning to be involved along with a Laois-based selector/coach.