AN approach has been made by the Dublin County board to 2012 Fingal manager, Willie Bourke, to remain in his post with just under two months to go before Fingal begin their Kehoe Cup campaign.
Bourke - who has re-iterated that family/work commitments will ultimately decide whether he remains in the job - believes that the panel is still committed despite there being no Nicky Rackard Cup action for a second year running. 'I'm sure it would have been a golden nugget for some of them but sometimes when you haven't won something it gives you something to aim for and I think that was a driving factor for some of the older members during this year's campaign.'
Speaking at Thursday night's launch of Wild Geese book launch ' There is an ' F' in Hurling - which attracted 23 clubs to Croke Park - Dublin County Board chairman, Andy Kettle believes that fixture congestion was a contributing factor in the decision not to enter a team for the Nicky Rackard. 'We have a terribly full county calendar and our job is to assimilate hurling into that calendar. 'The problem with Nicky Rackard is that because most of the footballers in Fingal are dual players it interferes with football and even with the six day rule it would be very difficult to facilitate both. 'It suits other counties who play it because they would have smaller hurling fraternities and they get their football out of the way and then they play the Nicky Rackard.'
And while many claim that a lack of Nicky Rackard hurling may hinder the Fingal hurling project, Kettle was also of the belief that no promotion out of Division 3A was of equal significance. 'The problem with furthering that team is they won Division 3A of the National League but they don't get promotion. It's a bit of a downer and my understanding is that the same thing will happen again next season. 'So there is very little incentive for guys going forward. The minors will because there is an enthusiastic group of young men who have now been promoted to the All Ireland 'B' Championship.'
And the Ravens man believes that there is still much work to do if hurling is to getter better recognition in the region. 'We are going through a transitional stage in Fingal at the moment in that the dual players are finding it difficult to get time away from football because the club feels that they are footballers rather than hurlers. 'So as such hurling is the poor relation in Fingal at the moment and we have got a lot of work to do to get it on an equal standing to football. 'Admittedly the club scene is doing well. We had Skerries fielding an under-21 team in the championship for the first time two weekends ago. 'I would be a big backer of hurling in Fingal and I think the work that has been done in previous years is starting to show benefits now.'