Carr primed for Meath's hotseat

Conor McKeon

PADDY CARR is now firmly in the frame to become the next manager of the Meath senior footballers after early front-runner, Seán Kelly pulled out of the running to succeed Seamus McEnaney, while fellow candidate Colm O'Rourke is also expected to remove himself from the process.

Kelly, a former Meath SFC winning manager with Navan O'Mahony's, had been installed as the initial favourite for the role after garnering strong support in many of the clubs around the county and receiving the required nomination prior to the close of submissions last week.

However, he has decided to concentrate on his studies this year and informed the Royal county board that he does not wish to be considered for the post.

O'Rourke, meanwhile, had signaled tentative interest initially and was also nominated but is thought to have decided against putting his name forward.

He has, in the past, been one of the most popular choices amongst Meath clubs in each of the four appointments since Seán Boylan's exit in 2006.

He managed Simonstown Gaels to Meath SFC finals in 2003 and '04 and had a two-year stint as the county's under-21 manager but has previously expressed a reluctance to take charge of the seniors while his son, Shane, is still involved with the team and would likely have to set aside his media commitments, both with RTÉ and the Sunday Independent if he was to take over.

Carr, meanwhile, has not officially ruled himself in but is known to be interested and now looks likely to pip Graham Geraghty for the job.

A former Meath minor manager, Carr guided Kilmacud Crokes to All-Ireland club success in 2009 after managed Louth in 2002 and '03, and has a strong backing within the Royal county this time around.

Geraghty has also firmly stated his interest and is known to have John Evans on board as trainer if he was to get the job but there is a groundswell of opinion in Meath that he is still too inexperienced for top office.

NICKY ENGLISH has ruled himself out of contention to succeed Declan Ryan as senior hurling manager. Along with Liam Sheedy, English is the popular local choice in the Premier county but insisted "it's not going to be possible to do because of my work situation".

It is understood that Tipp officials have met a number of candidates but Sheedy's intention are not yet known.

MONAGHAN are expected to appoint former Fermanagh manager, Malachy O'Rourke as their new senior football boss.

FINGAL captured the All-Ireland MHC 'C' title in emphatic fashion when defeating Cavan 3-21 to 2-7 in Saturday's decider in Ashbourne.

Niall O'Callaghan was the scorer-in-chief for Fingal as his seven points and goals from Colm Byrne, Kevin McLoughney and Phil Lennon paved the way for an impressive victory.

The Dubs made an electric start with a Phil Lennon point and goal from Colm Byrne putting their side in the driving seat inside the opening minutes on their way to a commanding 1-12 to 0-4 interval advantage.