Antrim board re-appoints football and hurling managers

Frank Dawson and Kevin Ryan have been reappointed for another year as the Antrim senior football and hurling managers respectively.

Antrim board re-appoints football and hurling managers

Frank Dawson and Kevin Ryan have been reappointed for another year as the Antrim senior football and hurling managers respectively.

A short statement released via the Antrim GAA Twitter account explained that last night's meeting of the Antrim County Committee 'has ratified the incumbent managers of the county's senior teams - Frank Dawson and Kevin Ryan'.

Dawson's position was thought to be under considerable pressure after the Saffrons were relegated from Division 3 of the Allianz League and lost their two Championship games to Monaghan and Louth.

However, the Belfast native will be given an opportunity to get things back in order during his second season in charge.

There are rumours that he allegedly survived by winning a narrow vote last night. Gearoid Adams and Lenny Harbinson - two contenders to replace the departed Liam Bradley in the role last year - had both been linked with the role again in recent weeks.

Dawson's tenure so far has been dogged by the unavailability of some key players with work commitments ruling Michael McCann out and James Loughrey deciding to line out for Cork.

McCann's brother Tomas and Tony Scullion were also told not to attend Antrim's final league match against Monaghan in April because they were unable to travel with the panel on the team bus from Belfast.

The pair said they could make their own way to Clones for the game following their attendance at an anniversary mass for a deceased uncle, but this was not an agreeable option for the Antrim management.

Scullion subsequently stated that he would not play for Antrim while Dawson was still in charge. He duly missed their Championship campaign as did Tomas McCann, although back in April Dawson insisted that there is "absolutely no door closed to anyone".

Meanwhile, Waterford man Kevin Ryan will hope to build on a mostly positive first year at the helm of the Saffrons' hurling squad.

Ryan's side managed to beat Carlow and avoid relegation from Division 1B of the Allianz League.

They then overcame Westmeath in the preliminary round of the Leinster Championship before defeats to Laois and Wexford ended their run.

The Wexford game was played on June 22 and Antrim were due to wrap up the summer by attempting to retain their Ulster SHC crown.

However, the provincial final against Down - postponed from its original July 14 date - is yet to be rescheduled amid talk of it being pushed back to October.

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