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ó hAilpín set for player welfare role

GREATER WESTERN Sydney Head of Development Alan McConnell has revealed that the club's Irish star Setanta ó hAilpín could have a future at the new franchise post retirement.

The coach heaped praise on the former Cork hurler and said his positive outlook in the aftermath of what could have been a career-ending injury led to his contract extension by the club.

GWS extended the former Carlton Blue's contract for another year despite the fact he only managed one game this season due to a knee injury. The Corkman required surgery after he ruptured an ACL, which he sustained playing against his old side Carlton.

"You would never have been able to tell from his demeanour around the club that he wasn't playing, of course apart from the fact that he was missing from games," McConnell said.

"He was just so positive throughout his rehab process and was such a vibrant character around the club and that's testament to him and his character. His journey has been quite unbelievable and he brings maturity and unique life experience to the club that has made him a real confidante for the rest of the boys. He just brings a mature, level-headed voice to every situation. As well as that his passion, honesty, loyalty and family values are huge assets to the club."

ó hAilpín's popularity and work ethic in Western Sydney is such that O'Connell can already see that there could be a future there for him after his playing days.

"Every club has a full-time player welfare manager and with the skill set that he has I could really see him fitting into that role. He's experienced so much himself that it's puts him in a really good position."

OFFALY hurling manager Ollie Baker has completed his backroom team for 2013 by naming former All-Ireland winning goalkeeper Stephen Byrne as a selector.

The Kilcormac/Killoughey man was part of the Faithful County side in 1998 that claimed success through the backdoor and he takes the place of Paudge Mulhare in Baker's management team.

Mark Corrigan continues in his role as selector.

In football, Gordon McDonnell and Paul Mollen were ratified as selectors to new Offaly senior boss Emmet McDonnell.

Gordon is a brother of the manager and will double up as the team's physical trainer.

Ger Coughlan andAidan Hanrahan will take charge of the Offaly under-21 hurlers.