Cork to address Frank Murphy's future

Cork officials were tight-lipped yesterday about the issues likely to be debated at tonight’s meeting of the Cork County Board executive officers.

Yesterday at the county finals in Páirc Uí Chaoimh, there was discussion of the agenda for that meeting, amid ongoing speculation about an extension of secretary, Frank Murphy’s contract into 2018 — in particular, the item on tonight’s agenda referring to staffing arrangements and how that may relate to Mr Murphy, among others.

“We have an executive meeting and based on what’s finalised at the executive, we’ll be coming forward to the county board after that,” said Cork board chairman Ger Lane yesterday. “I’m not in a position to say anything else until then.”

Lane was happy with how the two county finals went yesterday in the new stadium.

“Everything went well, we had a crowd around what we were expecting, somewhere between 15,000 and 20,000, and more important than that, we got the fine weather. I think the traffic management plan worked well, the crowd were able to get in and out well, and we also had two good matches. Overall we’d be very happy with the day.”

There was a lengthy delay in the football replay following an injury to Nemo’s Cian McWhinney as officials tried to get a stretcher buggy onto the field to carry the player off. Lane acknowledged that mistakes have been made but pointed out that everyone is learning in the new facility.

“We’re all learning — there’s no doubt but we’ve made mistakes, we made some the last day and we’ve probably made some today, but generally the stadium is new to most of us. To be fair to Bob (Ryan, stadium manager) and his team, they’d be happy enough with how things went. There might have been a few hitches but we’ll iron those out as we go along and hopefully people will go along with that.”

In that sense, the chairman felt two matches and an official opening ceremony was a good test of the facilities and procedures.

“There was a lot on today,” said Lane. “We had people playing music out the field, we had the jubilee team, we had dignitaries from the government and from Croke Park, there were meals organised — it was very busy and some people have been on site from 8.30am and will be here for another while yet this evening. We’re all learning how the experience can be improved but this was a good test and we’re looking forward to Munster championship games next year, when we’ll have things improved even further.”


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