Waterford to consider candidates to succeed Michael Ryan as manager

CCCC will not complete deliberations on Tyrone-Monaghan match until later in week

Waterford manager Michael Ryan with Kilkenny’s Brian Cody after the county’s qualifier exit. Photograph: Lorraine O’Sullivan/Inpho

Waterford manager Michael Ryan with Kilkenny’s Brian Cody after the county’s qualifier exit. Photograph: Lorraine O’Sullivan/Inpho


Waterford’s county executive meet this evening and is expected to appoint a sub-committee to consider candidates for the now vacant senior hurling manager’s position.

County secretary Tim O’Keeffe said yesterday that the protocol for selecting a successor to Michael Ryan, who announced on Sunday that he wouldn’t any longer be seeking an extension to his two-year tenure after a players’ meeting effectively voted no confidence in him, would be the same as when Ryan was appointed in 2011.

“A sub-committee will recommend a name for ratification by the county committee, as was the case two years ago.”

The composition of the sub-committee then was county chair, secretary and treasurer and it isn’t believed likely that any former players will be involved in the process this time either.

O’Keeffe said that he had been “surprised” by the players’ decision but didn’t believe that what had happened – five years after a previous player coup forced the departure of Justin McCarthy – would deter candidates from coming forward.

Ryan’s record over two years saw Waterford remain in Division One A of the hurling league, reach last year’s Munster final and take Kilkenny to extra time as well as introduce new players from the county’s stock of successful schools and under-age ranks.

Players met on Sunday with absent members of the panel voting by telephone. The decision that the team wanted a new voice and a higher-profile appointment if the team was to make progress was taken by a majority of more than two to one.

The outcome was clearly a shock to Ryan who had been implementing arrangements for an extension of his appointment, believed to be changes to his backroom team. Whereas he had been hoping for two more years, it was more likely that he would have received the go-ahead for one more season.

His tenure hadn’t been entirely free of controversy with two of his coaches Philip Ryan and former All Star Ken McGrath resigning as did one of the original selectors Nicky Cashin. John Mullane, the county’s best-known player, also retired after last season.

But Ryan was equally unfortunate with other absentees, most notably former captain Stephen Molumphy who was posted abroad with the army and Stephen Daniels, who sustained a season-ending injury before the championship.

Among the candidates being speculated on are county champions De La Salle coach Derek McGrath and Liam O’Connor, former minor county manager as well as others from outside the county such as former Cork captain Dónal Óg Cusack.

Although Ryan didn’t wish to comment on the matter yesterday, he will give his reaction on RTÉ’s [Championship Matters on Thursday evening.

Meanwhile it has emerged that the Croke Park CCCC will not complete its deliberations on the controversial Tyrone-Monaghan match until later in the week. During incidents when the teams were leaving the field at half-time Tyrone’s Martin Penrose was seen hitting opposing player Dessie Mone and shown a red card on his re-emergence after the break by referee Cormac Reilly.

Penrose’s team-mate Conor Gormley was also seen raising his hand to Mone but the referee appeared to miss the incident and took no action. It will be up to this week’s meeting of the CCCC to decide if Gormley has a case to answer and if so, recommend a suspension.

Whatever the outcome of the deliberations, there isn’t expected to be a communication to Tyrone for a couple of days. The county is in Sunday week’s All-Ireland semi-final against Mayo and any disciplinary issues will have to be resolved by then.