Carlow senior football manager Turlough O’Brien stepped down on Saturday in the wake of the GAA’s decision to postpone the inter-county season until October.
O’Brien, who had been appointed in September 2014, took the decision to ensure “a smooth transition” going into next year.
The Carlow County Board confirmed on Saturday: “Due to the reconfigured Inter-County season not set for resumption until mid October, and its inevitable lead into 2021 National League preparations, Turlough has brought forward his decision to step away with immediate effect to facilitate a smooth transition for the new season.”
It is believed O’Brien had intended to step away after this season and the news raises questions about other managers following suit. County boards may also have to consider extending agreements with their current managers who are in their final season or bringing them to an end prior to Championship.
In 2018, O’Brien guided The Barrow County to Division 3 for the first time in 33 years as well as a Leinster semi-final having beaten Kildare in the quarter-finals. The season before, the county enjoyed an extended summer beating Wexford, London and Leitrim.
Meanwhile, the death has taken place of former Kilkenny hurler Lester Ryan, uncle of 2014 Kilkenny All-Ireland winning captain of the same name. The Clara clubman, who won a Leinster medal in 1987 and had been a coaching officer as well as a member of the Leinster Council, died in a road accident on Saturday afternoon.
Kilkenny GAA’s social media accounts posted: “All associated with Kilkenny GAA were deeply saddened to hear of the tragic passing of Lester Ryan (Senior). As a player and as a Coach he left his mark on the GAA community both in Kilkenny and beyond. We extend our sympathies to his Wife and family. Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam.”