THE search for a new Limerick hurling manager is expected to begin in earnest on Tuesday evening when Limerick GAA’s County Board meet.
While TJ Ryan has one year remaining in his term, he won’t be continuing in place for 2017, stating in Thurles after Saturday evening's All Ireland SHC defeat to Clare that he had “taken them as far as I could”.
The process to find a successor for the former inter-county captain will begin at the Tuesday evening meeting with the monthly gathering of the clubs of Limerick in Claughaun to officially confirm his departure.
It is understood that Limerick GAA officials and TJ Ryan will meet ahead of the County Board meeting.
Before any official procedures are put in place, Limerick hurling supporters are already debating possible replacements – 2015 All Ireland U-21 winning manager John Kiely, Limerick minor hurling coach and former Clare and Dublin manager Anthony Daly, current Kerry manager Ciaran Carey, Na Piarsaigh’s All Ireland club winning manager Shane O’Neill and current Kildare manager Joe Quaid.
The role of hurling coach will also be the focus of much debate with Mark Foley and former Tipperary and current South Liberties coach Tommy Dunne already on many short lists among supporters.
“I have given everything as a player and manager to Limerick hurling and I have brought them as far as I could - it wasn’t to be, it wasn’t good enough. Without making anything formal, I will talk to the lads during the week but I have taken them as far as I could,” said Ryan in Thurles.
“It wasn’t good enough and I have no problem taking the fact of that – maybe to be fair to the lads, they might need a new voice. I will sleep on it and have a think about it for the next day or two and talk to the people involved and make a decision,” said Ryan, who was given a three year term days after the 2014 All Ireland semi final loss to Kilkenny.
“I have enjoyed but it just wasn’t to be.”
Ryan explained: “I took over to try and win trophies - you are measured on what you win and we didn’t win anything. I will be disappointed looking back but I think people in life look back and most of the regrets that people have are for the things they didn’t do - I had a go and wasn’t good enough”.
“I have given it absolutely everything, I genuinely have - I will look back and I have enjoyed it, thoroughly enjoyed it and I am very grateful to the people who gave me the opportunity and the guys who played for me and the guys who did everything and worked with me and I will always be grateful for the effort that everyone of them made for me,” said Ryan.