By Sean Creedon
As expected, Tom Cashman is the new Cork hurling manager replacing Jimmy Barry-Murphy, who stepped down two weeks ago.
Cashman’s selectors will be Johnny Crowley (Bishopstown), Fred Sheedy (Kilworth) and Phil Noonan of newly crowned county champions, Newtownshandrum.
Ted Owens will continue as team trainer.
And Tipperary footballers have a Corkman in charge as they plan ahead for next year’s Munster football championship first round tie against All-Ireland champions Kerry. He is Gárda Tom McGhachey, who is a physical education instructor in Templemore. He will have his first game in charge against Wexford in the third round of the National League on Sunday next.
GAA man retires
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Liam Creavin, the longest-serving county secretary in the GAA is to retire. Creavin, who has held the post in the Royal County for 45 years, will step down at the Meath County Convention on January 7.
Standing by his man
International Rules manager Brian McEniff says he will stand by Peter Canavan and pick him for next year’s series, even though he has received a one-match ban. The Tyrone star was banned for one game and his marker, Australian Jason Akermanis, got a two-match ban following a punch-up at Croke Park in both tests last month.
Grounds for thought
The GAA denied last week that it was having talks with the government regarding plans to use Croke Park for soccer and rugby.
The speculation began after the Irish Independent reported that further grant aid to the GAA could be contingent on it allowing rugby to be played at Croke Park.
Meanwhile, while the FAI fight among themselves, the Irish Rugby Football Union is sitting back and taking stock. It could redevelop Lansdowne Road and it also has a site at Newlands Cross on the Naas Road which has much better road access than Citywest, where the FAI plan to build. Eircom Park, Newlands Cross has a good bus service and the new Luas rail link will run within a few hundred yards of the Newlands Cross site.
Michael Carruth, who won a gold medal for Ireland at the Barcelona Olympics, has called on Olympic Council of Ireland boss Pat Hickey to quit.
Carruth joins a growing list of athletes who want to see a change at the top in the OCI. However, Hickey says he has no intention of stepping down and will be going forward for reelection at its annual general meeting.
Keane leaving Milan?
Republic of Ireland striker Robbie Keane may be on his way out of
Inter Milan. With the Dubliner dropping down to fifth in the striker rankings at Inter, there has been speculation that he may move on loan to Reggina. But wherever he goes, everybody will know that Keane is Irish, by the ringing tone on his mobile phone.
Said manager Mick McCarthy: "Robbie loves playing for Ireland. Just listen to his mobile phone ring. I know it’s his phone because when it rings we get ‘Sin é Fíanna Fáil’ ringing down the corridor.”
But it’s unlikely that Paul Butler, who won his first Irish cap against the Czech Republic last February, has the opening line of the National Anthem as the ringing tone on his mobile. Butler, who moved from Sunderland to Wolverhampton on a month’s loan last week, was taken off at half-time in the game against the Czechs and has not figured since then.
"I haven’t heard from Mick McCarthy in a while and I don’t know why that is," Butler said. "In my heart I still want to play for Ireland. I’d like to get another chance because I don’t think I did myself justice in the Czech game. But I want to play international football and if the call came from Welsh manager Mark Hughes, I would have to speak to him.”
Butler, who qualifies for Ireland through his Kildare-born wife, is also qualified to play for Wales.
Kudos for Keane
Roy Keane is one of six Manchester United players short-listed for the European Footballer of the Year award. Last year’s winner was Barcelona star Rivaldo, with Keane finishing sixth, the highest ever ranking for a Republic of Ireland player.
Former Irish soccer international Eddie McGoldrick has made the move into management. McGoldrick, never a regular under Jack Charlton, has been appointed manager of his local team, Corby Town.