Antrim appoint Wallis as new hurling boss

Jerry Wallis has been charged with improving the fortunes of the Antrim senior hurling team following his appointment last night as their new manager.

John Crossey withdrew from the managerial race last week, leaving just two candidates to go forward - outgoing Saffrons boss Dinny Cahill and former Limerick and Cork trainer Wallis.

The Cork native's appointment was ratified by the Antrim County Committee at a meeting last night. He has been given a two-year term with the option of a further year.

Wallis knows the Antrim set-up very well having looked after their physical training last year before taking up a similar role in Limerick with the now departed Donal O'Grady.

Confirming the selection of Wallis, Antrim County Chairman Jim Murray said: "We are moving forward now with Jerry who knows the Antrim hurling scene through his earlier involvement with the squad.

"I believe that there is huge potential for Antrim hurling and we are working now towards maximising that potential. I see Jerry as having a big role to play. We are now looking forward to the 2012 season."

Cahill's final season at the helm saw Antrim retain their Ulster SHC title before reaching the third phase of the All-Ireland qualifiers where they lost to Limerick (3-22 to 0-12).

Murray praised Cahill for his 'tremendous commitment to the Antrim hurlers over two terms'. "On both occasions when he came on board, Dinny gave the hurling scene a lift and over the last two years Antrim have made undoubted progress," he remarked.

"The highlights were the famous Championship win over Dublin last year along with the quarter-final performance against Cork. This year saw the first Leinster Championship win over Laois and further victories over Westmeath and Carlow.

"We are very grateful to Dinny and his team for their efforts. He helped lift Antrim to a new standard and I am sure he will be a friend to Antrim hurling for years to come."

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