Race for Tipperary job heats up as manager search turns into two-man race

Race for Tipperary job heats up as manager search turns into two-man race

Liam Cahill. Photo:Sportsfile1
Liam Cahill. Photo:Sportsfile

Michael Verney

The race to replace Michael Ryan and become the next Tipperary senior hurling manager is turning into a two-man duel between Willie Maher and Liam Cahill with a decision to be made in the coming weeks.

Ryan stepped down five weeks ago in the wake of a disappointing 2018 which saw the Premier County suffer a league final defeat to Kilkenny before bowing out of the Munster senior championship at the round-robin stage with two draws and two defeats from four games.

There’s little to separate the pair and no sign of white smoke as of yet with Maher, Tipp’s All-Ireland minor-winning manager in 2012, and Waterford selector in Derek McGrath’s first year at the helm in 2014, sounded out about the job in recent weeks.

Cahill, who guided the Tipp U-21s to a surprise All-Ireland success as they avenged a Munster final defeat to overturn a much-fancied Cork side last month, and also led them to All-Ireland minor glory in 2016, is understood to have met with the selection committee earlier this week.

The Premier board have not entertained outside candidates – Tipperary’s hurlers have never had a manager from outside the county – and it is expected that one of the Ballingarry club-mates will be the man to steer Tipp into 2019.

It is believed that Colm Bonnar, twice an All-Ireland winner with Tipp, was also contacted about the vacancy but ruled himself out with confirmation coming yesterday that he will remain at the helm of Joe McDonagh Cup champions Carlow.

Irish Independent

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