Sport Hurling

Thursday 14 December 2017

Ryan and Dunne poised to take Tipp reins

Donnchadh Boyle

Donnchadh Boyle

TIPPERARY look set to rubber-stamp the appointment of former All-Ireland winners Declan Ryan and Tommy Dunne as the men to replace Liam Sheedy.

However, Tipp officials last night moved to quash reports that there would be a specially convened County Board meeting tonight to ratify the successors to Sheedy.

Ryan and Dunne -- team-mates on the 2001 All-Ireland-winning team -- are regarded as the clear favourites to take over the reins of the reigning champions and speculation yesterday suggested that their ratification was imminent.

Tipperary PRO Ger Ryan, however, rubbished reports that a meeting would be held tonight. "There will be no meeting of the Tipperary County Board this week," he said. "I don't know where reports of one came from.

"We're in the process of finding a replacement for Liam and obviously there will be lots of speculation, but it takes a full board meeting to appoint a manager and we haven't called one for this week."

But there is a growing belief that clubs could be asked to rubber-stamp the new management team before the next scheduled County Board meeting at the end of the month.

Since Nicky English ruled himself out last week, Ryan -- who won three All-Ireland medals in 1989, 1991 and 2001 -- has been favourite to succeed Sheedy, with Dunne joining him as team coach.

Dunne was captain of the 2001 side and the pair have worked together previously when they guided the county's minor side to All-Ireland success in 2007.

Other members of that management team included Liam Cahill and Michael Gleeson and it is thought Ryan will bring one of those on board as selector.

Gleeson, as manager of recently crowned county champions Thurles Sarsfields, is thought to be in the box seat, but he is currently engaged in a Munster club championship campaign.

Meanwhile, Seamus McEnaney indicated yesterday that he remains a contender to succeed Eamonn O'Brien in Meath -- thereby pouring cold water on reports that he was to withdraw from the race after the County Board decided to take an extra week to consider his recommendation.

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