Brian Whelahan quits Offaly as Davy Fitzgerald sticks with Clare

Brian Whelahan has stepped down as Offaly senior hurling manager after two seasons in charge, the board’s executive informed club delegates in Tullamore last night.

Brian Whelahan quits Offaly as Davy Fitzgerald sticks with Clare

Offaly’s championship this year comprised two defeats, losing to Laois in a Leinster quarter-final followed by a 20-point qualifier exit at the hands of Clare.

Offaly must qualify to play in next year’s Leinster championship proper having lost to Laois.

Meanwhile, Clare’s All-Ireland winning manager Davy Fitzgerald will remain in the role next season.

Fitzgerald and his football counterpart Colm Collins have informed the county board that they wish to fulfil their existing managerial terms and will continue to take charge of the senior sides in 2016.

Clare chairman Michael McDonagh said: “I am delighted that Colm and Davy are committed to remaining in their respective positions for 2016. While everyone associated with Clare GAA is disappointed with the progress of both teams during 2015, we firmly believe that they are better things in store, and both Colm and Davy are the right people to lead their teams forward.”

Mayo defender Kevin Keane faces a race against time to be fit for Sunday’s Connacht SFC final against Sligo.

The 24-year-old full-back is understood to have injured his ankle during an internal practice match in Castlebar last weekend and is set to miss out on starting his second provincial decider. Former All Star No. 3, Ger Cafferkey, is on standby to return to the first fifteen if Keane fails to recover from his injury.

The Westport defender injured his ankle during the warm-up before Mayo’s semi-final win over Galway, but managed to get through the 70 minutes on that occasion.

On a more positive note for the Connacht champions, Diarmuid O’Connor, who sustained a hairline fracture to his wrist during the semi-final four weeks ago, looks set to line out next weekend.

The Mayo team is expected to be announced early tomorrow morning.

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