Cork County Board officials call for calm

In the wake of comments by some of their senior intercounty hurlers in recent days, Cork officials have called for calm on Leeside and for players to show restraint for the greater good of Cork hurling.

In the wake of comments by some of their senior intercounty hurlers in recent days, Cork officials have called for calm on Leeside and for players to show restraint for the greater good of Cork hurling.

A statement issued this afternoon by Cork GAA PRO Bob Ryan, on behalf of the Cork County Board, called for common sense to prevail.

Thet statement also outlined in detail the process which eventually led to Gerald McCarthy's reappointment as Cork senior hurling manager.

While the Cork County Board have accepted that they may have been in the wrong on occasion in the past, they believe that players, officials and all concerned should now look forward with a focus to benefit Cork hurling.

"Attacks on the (Cork) County Board by a very small number of players have become something of a cliche," the statement read.

"Cork County Board may have been guilty of misjudgements in the past but few can deny that we have made adjustments to take account of changed times, new values and circumstances.

"But as representatives of the wider GAA family in Cork, we would ask the players, particularly those in leadership positions, to consider whether their current action and threatened action is justified, proportionate or fair.

"We sincerely appeal to them to step back from all of this, to resume their careers, to allow others to resume theirs, and to remember that Cork hurling is bigger than any individual, set of individuals or County Board."

Cork GAA also expressed its regret over recent events while firmly backing McCarthy as manager.

"The Board re-affirms its support for its properly appointed hurling manager, Gerald McCarthy, and expresses its admiration for his resolve in the current, difficult circumstances.

"We have no wish to become involved in a tit for tat exchange of statements in the media with player representatives

"However, it is important to say this. Board members involved in the selection process for the new manager are at a loss to understand how player representatives could claim that the process was flawed from the outset."

The statement went on to outline in detail how McCarthy was eventually re-appointed, and also explained how the committee were unaware of McCarthy's availability for the role, at the outset.

"Five meetings took place, four of which were perfectly cordial and constructive.

"At the commencement of the process, the selection committee was unaware that Gerald McCarthy would even be available for the coming season.

"At no stage in any of the meetings, did either of the player representatives formally propose the name of any other candidate for consideration.

"At the third meeting, there was a discussion of the names of other possible managers and at no stage was it suggested that any of those talented coaches was superior to Gerald McCarthy.

"When a vote was called at the fifth meeting, player representatives walked out."

McCarthy took the unprecedented step of issuing his own statement by email to the media on Thursday, while he also gave a number of radio interviews, in which he called on the Rebels' younger players not to be fazed by the actions of their peers.

McCarthy also outlined his growing frustration over current events, and questioned whether players should have a say in the appointment of a manager.

Earlier this week 2008 All-Star Ben O'Connor said that the players 'are ready to go the whole distance' when it comes to their refusal to player under the newly reappointed manager.

Cork are not due back into competitive action until the commencement of the National Hurling League next February, but they are due to fulfil a fixture to celebrate the 150th Anniversary of St Colman's College on November 23.

That challenge game is pencilled in for Fermoy, with a team of past pupils, including Cork's Brian Murphy, Neil Ronan and Timmy McCarthy, 2007 All-Star Andrew O'Shaughnessy of Limerick and Waterford's Eoin Murphy, due to face the Rebels.

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