Sunday 27 May 2018

Daly: I haven't even thought about Dubs job

Anthony Daly was talking at the eir Sport pack season launch. Photo: ©INPHO/Morgan Treacy
Anthony Daly was talking at the eir Sport pack season launch. Photo: ©INPHO/Morgan Treacy

Sam Wheeler

Anthony Daly insists he has "not even thought about" returning to the Dublin hurling hot-seat - but, amid widespread speculation, he has refused to rule himself out of the race.

The Clare man transformed the Dubs' fortunes in six seasons at the helm from 2009-14, winning a National League and a Leinster title, and talk of a return to the capital was sparked by his decision to step down from his role as director of coaching at the Limerick hurling academy last week.

Former star Conal Keaney has led a clamour of calls for him to come back, and Daly's odds of getting the job were cut to 9/2 fourth favourite, with Cuala's club All-Ireland-winning boss Mattie Kenny leading the way. So what would Daly (pictured) do if the Dublin county board approached him?

"Sure I don't know, I haven't even thought about it," said the 47-year-old, who won two All-Irelands as a player, and concedes that he was "tempted" to go for a second crack at the Clare job when it became available last year.

"Honest to God. I haven't, I swear to God. Until someone picks up that phone... you'd have to think about it then, maybe, but I'd be driving myself demented looking at my mobile phone, 'Did I miss any calls?'.

"At this stage of my life as well, if you go back at that level you'd have to give up the media stuff and it's nice - you can still have a very high level of involvement.

"I've done nine years of inter-county management and feck it, I had a good innings," he explained at the launch of the eir Sport pack.

"I'd like to have won an All-Ireland, that's something I'd have to say that I would regret. It didn't happen and sure look, I still enjoyed it all. I don't know, I don't know, I don't know. It's a long haul as well, all that… As I often say, playing is a grand thing, with managing you're worrying about everyone's problems."

Daly is hardly issuing a 'come-and-get-me plea', but he clearly retains an emotional investment in the Dublin team, which has fallen on hard times since he was succeeded by Ger Cunningham. He is still haunted by the 2013 semi-final defeat to Cork, which he watches "often" on DVD.

He believes that whoever takes over will be helped by the "spadework" done by Cunningham (who he endorsed for the job) in blooding so many young players, although he warns that the handful of stars who quit the panel after falling out with the former manager cannot expect to waltz straight back into the team.

Anthony Daly was talking at the eir Sport pack season launch.

Irish Independent

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