Sunday 18 February 2018

Stephen Rochford putting all Mayo thoughts on hold to focus on Corofin

Corofin manager Stephen Rochford says there has been no contact with Mayo officials
Corofin manager Stephen Rochford says there has been no contact with Mayo officials

John Fallon

Corofin manager Stephen Rochford, the favourite to take charge of his native Mayo following the exit of Noel Connelly and Pat Holmes, says there has been no contact with officials in the county.

The Crossmolina clubman, who recently guided Corofin to their third Galway title having earlier this year lifted the All-Ireland crown, says that the next week will be pivotal in whether he takes charge of Mayo.

It is understood that he is 'sounding out' a strong backroom team which might include former Armagh All-Ireland winner Tony McEntee and retired Ireland rugby star Gavin Duffy in a strength and conditioning role.

Duffy, who now works for Connacht Rugby in a commercial capacity, is a former Mayo minor and was drafted into the senior squad by James Horan when he retired from rugby a couple of seasons ago, but did not play.


Rochford saw Corofin begin the defence of their Connacht title with a 1-17 to 0-7 win over Leitrim champions Mohill on Sunday and confirmed that there had not been any discussions with Mayo officials about the vacancy.

"No, there has been no contact. As everybody is aware the nomination process opened last week. I know it sounds like a bit of a broken record but I was very much focused on the Corofin aspect," he said.

"There are a couple of things happening in Mayo and as I indicated in the past it is something that would interest me but whether now is going to be the time or not is probably something we will know a lot in the next seven days.

"But the main interest for me at the moment is preparing Corofin for the Connacht semi-final away to St Mary's in Sligo on Sunday week. That's the priority at the minute."

Rochford expects to have county star Gary Sice, Galway hurler Daithi Burke and wing-forward Dylan Wall back for the semi-final against the Sligo champions after they withdrew through injury before Sunday's quarter-final win.

Meanwhile, former manager James Horan has confirmed that he will not be back in the hot-seat.

"When the vacancy came up, I thought about it, but decided very quickly that I wouldn't be letting my name go forward," he said.

Irish Independent

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