Thursday 27 October 2016

Cody losing out in local v international rivalry

Published 09/12/2015 | 02:30

Kilkenny manager Brian Cody
Kilkenny manager Brian Cody

Brian Cody's haul as Kilkenny manager since 1999 includes the following titles: 11 All-Ireland; 8 National League; 14 Leinster.

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He has presided over All-Ireland/Leinster/League triple success five times; won the All-Ireland four-in-a-row once; the treble once and the double on four occasions, as well as one League treble.

It's an amazing record, yet he has been chosen as Philips Sports Manager of the Year (the 2015 winner will be announced today) only once. That was in 2003 when Kilkenny's latest empire building was in the relatively early stages.

It's extraordinary that so much success since then has gone unrewarded on the managerial front but then only two of the last nine gongs (Liam Sheedy 2010 and Jim Gavin 2013) went to GAA bosses.

It has, of course, been a period of high achievement on the rugby (Declan Kidney won three awards and Joe Schmidt one) and boxing (Billy Walsh/Pete Taylor) fronts, while, in soccer, Giovanni Trapattoni and Paul Doolin picked up awards.

Basically, it has usually come down to this: the award goes to GAA managers only in years when there's no international alternative.

The argument is that international always trumps local which is fair enough up a point. But in the interest of fairness, there should be two awards, one international, one domestic.

The repeated omission of Cody over the last 11 years proves the point.

Irish Independent

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