Kieran Murphy and Abbeyside hurlers will benefit from coaching move

Sarsfields man will pick up vital experience across the border
Kieran Murphy and Abbeyside hurlers will benefit from coaching move

Kieran 'Fraggie' Murphy in 2018, when he was Cork senior hurling coach. The Sarsfields man is the new manager of Waterford's Abbeyside. Picture: Eddie O'Hare

Former Cork coach and captain Kieran Murphy is set to take charge of Waterford club Abbeyside for the coming season.

The 2004 and 2005 All-Ireland winner was part of John Meyler’s U21 and senior management teams over the past half-decade as coach. Last year, he was in charge of the Sarsfields intermediate team which reached the county IHC semi-final, losing to Éire Óg after a penalty shootout, while also assisting Dónal Óg Cusack with the Cork minors.

Murphy, who captained Sars to the 2008 county SHC, had been in the running for the senior job with his home club but ultimately Barry Myers received the nod there. While he is likely to be involved at club and county level in Cork again, he has opted to use his time now to good effect and both he and Abbeyside should benefit from this new venture. The club - which is hurling-only but has a sister football side in Ballinacourty - reached the Waterford senior quarter-final in 2020, losing to Lismore. In 2018, they made it to the final for the first time in a decade, falling to Ballygunner.

Waterford has been a fruitful hunting ground for Cork coaches and managers in the past.

Both Gerald McCarthy and Justin McCarthy managed the Déise county hurling team while Gerald’s successor as Cork boss, Denis Walsh, had a stint as the Waterford football manager just after the turn of the millennium. On the hurling front, the St Catherine’s man has been in charge of Ballyduff and Ballygunner, leading the latter to county senior titles in 2015 and 2016.

The Gunners seem to find Cork managers to be a lucky charm – in 2009, Ger Cunningham was boss when they also went all the way in the county championship. Cunningham has also managed Dublin, of course, while Justin McCarthy and Jerry Wallace have gone further north, both enjoying spells as manager of Antrim, while McCarthy has also been with Clare and Limerick as well as guiding Cashel King Cormacs to Tipperary and Munster club championships.

Another Corkman with a provincial club title outside the county is Frank Flannery, who achieved great success with Wexford’s Oulart The Ballagh and later coached the Westmeath senior team. Meyler and Eddie Murphy have also done excellent work in promoting hurling in Kerry.

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Football-wise, there aren’t as many examples. Current Cork selector Bobbie O’Dwyer was involved with Legion while based in Killarney and former manager Peadar Healy spent some time with Dr Crokes.

Former Clyda footballer Tom McGlinchey when he was involved with Waterford. Picture: INPHO/Morgan Treacy
Former Clyda footballer Tom McGlinchey when he was involved with Waterford. Picture: INPHO/Morgan Treacy

While Cork natives Peter Creedon (Tipperary and Laois) and Tom McGlinchey (Tipp and Waterford) have managed inter-county sides, it was after leaving the county. Shane Ronayne, who led Mourneabbey ladies to the promised land, achieved that in tandem with improving the fortunes of the Tipperary ladies and now he has been tasked with the Waterford men’s job.

Hopefully he and Fraggie will find Suirside to be a happy hunting ground in 2021.

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