Saturday 16 December 2017

Row rumbles on over Offaly blueprint

(Stock photo)
(Stock photo)
Martin Breheny

Martin Breheny

A high-powered Offaly hurling committee, which resigned en bloc after claiming they were not getting the necessary support from the County Board, is to be asked to return.

County Board Chairman Tommy Byrne has given a commitment to clubs that he will contact members of an Implementation Committee, chaired by former inter-county hurler Liam Hogan, asking them to reconsider their decision.

However, it's unlikely that harmony will emerge any time soon as Hogan was deeply critical of Byrne in an interview on Midlands Radio last weekend, going as far as to suggest that the chairman "needs to step aside".

The crux of the issue is the implementation of Offaly's Hurling Pathway Plan, designed to chart a way forward in a county whose stock has plummeted over the last decade.

The committee charged with its implementation was led by Hogan, a former Ballyboden St Enda's manager, and also included former Offaly hurlers Brian Carroll, Michael Verney and David Kenny. They - and the other members - quit after being frustrated over what they regarded as a lack of action on key proposals.

Following a meeting between Offaly club chairpersons/secretaries and the County Board's management committee this week, a commitment was given to roll out the plan.

In a statement, the Offaly County Board promised to provide within two weeks details on aspects of the plan implemented to date and to outline how the rest would be rolled out.

A Steering Committee will be appointed to oversee the work.

Irish Independent

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