Board to select next Cork boss

THE appointment process for selecting the next Cork senior hurling manager is expected to be overseen by the county board rather than the three-man independent committee used to select Denis Walsh in March 2009.

Walsh’s term came to an end after Saturday’s qualifier defeat to Galway but he may still be in the frame to be re-appointed.

Regardless of whether Walsh receives another tenure, or a search for a new manager commences, the responsibility is likely to revert to the county board.

The committee, comprising of former senior stars Jimmy Barry-Murphy, John Fenton and Denis Coughlan, that appointed Walsh, was established two years ago after a winter of bitter conflict in Cork hurling circles.

But the system used then was regarded as an exceptional measure and it is expected that Tuesday’s meeting of the county board will begin the process to appoint a manager.

“I wouldn’t expect there to be an independent committee used again,” revealed county board chairman Jerry O’Sullivan.

“That was an unusual and unique situation. We’re in different times now. It is the function of the board in all normal circumstances to appoint a new manager.

“We’ll be looking to deal with this as quickly as possible, whether it’s a re-appointment or a new appointment. The matter will be discussed at Tuesday night’s county board meeting next week. Clubs will get their heads around suggesting the methods of appointment. I’d expect there to be a notice of motion at that meeting.

“Regardless of who is appointed, we want to do it as quickly as we can to give them the best chance of starting preparations for next year. The sooner they’re appointed, the sooner they can start planning and watching club games.”

Meanwhile Cork senior footballer Aidan Walsh will be part of the U-21 hurling management’s plans for Friday night’s Bord Gáis Energy Munster U21HC semi-final with Tipperary in Thurles.

Walsh was not involved last season but did line out at half-back for the U21 hurling side two years ago in a quarter-final tie against Tipperary and his availability is a major boost to manager Ger Fitzgerald’s plans. The only confirmed absentees for Cork are attacker Ciarán Sheehan who is unavailable due to cruciate ligament damage and defender Pat O’Brien who is sidelined with a blood infection.

A number of the Cork squad were involved in games last weekend but all emerged unscathed.

Meanwhile Tomás Ó Flatharta’s future as Galway football manager will not be decided for a few weeks. The former Westmeath boss was appointed for three years last autumn but it is subject to an annual ratification process. There is growing speculation that Ó Flatharta may not be re-appointed after relegation from the top flight in the league with just one win, followed by championship defeats to Mayo and Meath.

The senior team manager’s position is not on the agenda for the scheduled Galway football board meeting tomorrow night and while their championship exit is likely to be discussed, Ó Flatharta’s position will not be decided.

Galway football board chairman John Joe Holleran said the priority for the moment was the Connacht minor final next Sunday when Galway take on Roscommon.

“Our immediate plans are to concentrate on the Connacht final for our minors next weekend and getting the intermediate and senior club championships back in action the following weekend,” said Holleran. He said they have “no immediate plans” to meet to discuss the future of Tomás Ó Flatharta as manager.

Galway have not won a qualifier game since defeating Louth in 2004.

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