NEW Waterford hurling manager Michael Ryan has laid down an early marker by dropping Eoin Kelly from the Deise squad.
The former county selector, who has taken over the reins from Davy Fitzgerald, was reportedly unhappy with Kelly's level of fitness.
Like most inter-county managers, Ryan had given his players individualised personal fitness programmes to follow during the 'closed season'.
Waterford had their first collective training session last weekend and Kelly was informed that he is not currently in the manager's plans.
The 29-year-old was the country's top scorer in the 2008 All- Ireland championship when he racked up a whopping 7-43, including 1-9 (9f) in the All-Ireland final against Kilkenny.
A spokesman for the Waterford management said that they would not be making a statement on the decision but added that if players performed well in club games, they may be reconsidered.
Two-time All Star Kelly, who made his senior debut in 2002, remains eager to be included in the panel for the coming campaign and has insisted that he is not retiring.