Cork are on the lookout for a new senior hurling manager after the announcement that Kieran Kingston will not be seeking a new term.
Kingston’s three-year stint in charge – his second spell, having also been manager in 2016 and 2017 – came to an end with the All-Ireland SHC quarter-final defeat to Galway a fortnight ago. While it had been reported that he had been offered a one-year extension, this has not materialised.
Kingston, who played in Cork’s 1986 All-Ireland final win over Galway, served as selector and then coach under Jimmy Barry-Murphy, a period where Cork reached the All-Ireland final and then a Munster championship.
After a year out, he was the popular choice to take over from Barry-Murphy at the end of 2015.
While his first year in charge was a tough one, Cork bounced back the following year to win the Munster title.
Having stepped down at the end of 2017, with John Meyler taking over for two years, Kingston returned at the end of 2019 and guided Cork to the 2021 All-Ireland final and 2022 Allianz Hurling League final.
A statement from Cork County Board said that “the incredible contribution of Kieran’s backroom team over the past three years is also acknowledged and while the success that all deserved may not have followed, they can hold their heads high, knowing that they served their county well."
Cork County Board chairperson Marc Sheehan said: “Kieran’s commitment to his duties as Cork senior hurling manager knew no bounds and the time devoted in a voluntary capacity was immeasurable.
“He carried the role in a dignified manner at all times, fully understanding of the importance of his position. We wish him well in his future endeavours and have no doubt that he will continue to make a significant contribution to Cork hurling long into the future.”
Those views were echoed by Cork CEO/secretary Kevin O’Donovan.
He said: “Looking across the past decade, one has to recognise the indelible mark that Kieran has left on our senior hurling team, overseeing what has been a difficult transition at times, with the introduction of a whole wave of young and exciting talent.
“Indeed, there is no doubt that, given the number of players who made their debuts under Kieran, he departs safe in the knowledge that he has left Cork hurling in a healthy state. We thank his family, particularly his wife Ellen, for their support also.” The search for the new manager will begin immediately, with the July monthly meeting of the county board taking place this Tuesday. Among the names likely to feature as possible successors are Noel Furling, a selector and coach under Kingston this year and manager of last year’s All-Ireland minor-winning side, and Pat Ryan, who guided Cork to successive All-Ireland U20 titles.