independent

Tuesday 24 October 2017

END OF THE ROAD

J.J. Doyle and camogie management team step down after three very successful years

DEAN GOODISON Sports reporter

The Wexford Senior camogie management team, who have stepped down after three successful years, in Wexford Park on Sunday last (from left): Joe Brennan, Tommy Roche, J.J. Doyle, Geraldine Murphy and Gerry McQuaid.
The Wexford Senior camogie management team, who have stepped down after three successful years, in Wexford Park on Sunday last (from left): Joe Brennan, Tommy Roche, J.J. Doyle, Geraldine Murphy and Gerry McQuaid.

WEXFORD CAMOGIE has been rocked by the news that J.J. Doyle and his management team of Joe Brennan, Tommy Roche, Geraldine Murphy and trainer Gerry McQuaid have stepped down as custodians of the three-time All-Ireland winners.

The players were called to a meeting in Farmleigh on Friday night and were informed of the group's collective decision not go forward for a fourth year in charge of the side.

Doyle had been non-committal over his future in the role following last month's All-Ireland final win, leading to speculation that he may have presided over his last game as Wexford manager.

Leaving the meeting on Friday night last, players were said to be 'devastated' by the news and speculation will now mount that several of the more experienced players will follow suit and decide to call it a day. Kate Kelly, Claire O'Connor, Michelle O'Leary and Lenny Holohan are all the wrong side of 30 and may now have a bigger decision to make than they might have had before.

Doyle began his tenure over the Senior side in 2010, inheriting a team which was league champions and All-Ireland semi-finalists. The Bainisteóir helped his side to retain the league title in a hardfought win over Kilkenny before going on to claim the county's fifth All-Ireland, beating Galway.

Doyle also took the reins at Intermediate level in 2011 and led the second string to their first-ever All-Ireland title. Another league final success against Cork, to complete the three-in-a-row, came in April and the All-Ireland double was forged in Croke Park when the Seniors fought back to dismiss the Galway challenge yet again.

Doyle made way at Intermediate level at the end of 2011 to concentrate on firing his charges to an historic All-Ireland three-peat. The league final in May would prove to be the only blemish on his managerial copybook as Cork deservedly took the their first national title since 2009, but the sense of revenge provided the sweetest of all victories as the Rebelettes were comprehensively brushed aside in arguably the greatest day in Wexford camogie history.

The Marshalstown man's record of eight Senior trophies won out of the nine available rivals anyone the game has seen and the 2011 'Manager of the Year' will be an extremely tough act to follow.

Wexford County Board is faced with the unenviable task of replacing the most successful manager they have ever had. Previous Chairperson Eilis Kavanagh's tenure in the hot seat was defined by her decision to choose Doyle as manager in late 2009 and now Rathnure's Martina Donnellan, is left staring into the same chasm.

Others involved in the selection committee are county P.R.O. Barbara Ryan, county Vice-Chairman Noel Ryan, Castletown club member Yvonne Donohoe and Noel Wilson, the county Development Officer. As well as forming a shortlist themselves, the committee is also seeking applications from interested parties.

Anybody who would like to be considered for the role of Wexford Senior camogie manager is asked to contact a County Board member to make their interest known.

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