Former Cork All-Ireland winning manager Donal O’Grady has stepped down as coach and co-manager of the Limerick senior hurlers.
The following statement was released exclusively to the Irish Examiner last night.
“Limerick hurling co managers TJ Ryan and Donal O’Grady sought an immediate meeting with county board officers when certain statements at a recent board meeting appeared in the press,” it read.
“One such statement informed the meeting that the co-managers ‘apologised for the abysmal’ displays during the league at a previous league review meeting.
“This statement was simply untrue.
“Furthermore the co-managers were appalled and alarmed that such statements would be made as they completely undermined the efforts of the players who had worked tremendously hard over the winter to advance the cause of Limerick senior hurling.
“The co-managers sought a retraction of the ‘apology’ statement and clarification of other statements at this joint meeting between the officers and managers on April 11 [three days after the board meeting]. At the outset of this meeting chairman, Oliver Mann, admitted without issue, that no apology was ever tendered to the officers by the management.
“It was decided to issue a statement on the Limerick GAA website the following day withdrawing the untrue statement, while clarifying others. This did not happen.
“Ten days have elapsed since. No clarifications and no retraction of the untrue statement have been made public as agreed. As no official retraction or clarification was published, national press coverage has continued to report the untrue statement, which has further undermined the management and playing panel.
“Donal O’Grady wishes to state that regretfully at this point in time he has no other option but to step down forthwith from his position of coach and co-manager.
“The chair of the board and the players and other members of the management team have been informed. As upcoming fixtures are in place, TJ Ryan will continue in his managerial role in the interim, in the interests of continuity.”
O’Grady, who steered Cork to an epic All-Ireland victory over Kilkenny in 2004, had managed Limerick for two seasons in 2010 and 2011.
He returned to the county set up last November taking over from his former selector John Allen.
Limerick chairman Oliver Mann said at the time: “When Donal O’Grady came in, in 2011 he came for one year and the appointment was for one year. We were anxious he would stay on but for whatever reason, and I don’t know why, he didn’t stay on. But now he is back and for two years and I am happy with that — obviously he sees a future in Limerick hurling.”
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