BY KIERAN McCARTHY
BOTH Castlehaven and Clonakilty have gone back to the past in an effort to return the good times to their GAA clubs this season.
Castlehaven stalwart Jim Nolan – a former All-Ireland winning Cork senior football selector – has been named as Castlehaven’s new football manager, taking over from Finbarr Santry who was in charge the past two years. Nolan was trainer of the Haven team that won both county and Munster senor titles in 1994.
Club chairman Christy Collins, who was also involved in the management team with Nolan back in ’94 and is himself a former Haven manager, and Brendan Deasy will serve as selectors for Castlehaven this year, as the club looks to bounce back from a disappointing 2014 championship campaign.
It was widely expected that former county-winning manager James McCarthy would return as Castlehaven manager but that didn’t materialise.
Meanwhile, Michael ‘Casey’ O’Donovan is back at the helm of Clonakilty, who he previously guided to the 1996 county senior football title.
O’Donovan’s management team will consist of Kenmare native Billy O’Connor, who has been involved with various Clonakilty underage teams over the last few years, while remaining on from 2014 are Eddie Kirwan, as trainer, and Eoin Ryan and Padraig White, who will both serve as selectors.
O’Donovan Rossa also have a new manager with Shane Crowley getting the nod this season, as ex-Cork selector Peadar Healy has moved to Kerry club Dr Crokes.
Crowley, a selector for the Skibbereen side last season, will be joined by selectors Pat McCarthy and Niall McCarthy, with Cathal Keohane as trainer.
Carbery Rangers are starting this year with the same management team that brought such success last season – a first county senior football final appearance in over 100 years and Kelleher Shield champions.
Micheál O’Sullivan and Johnny Murphy remain in charge with Robbie Ahern, John Fitzpatrick and Vincent Hegarty making up the backroom team.
Johnny Holland is staying on as Ilen Rovers’ senior football manager but his selectors haven’t been finalised just yet.
The Dohenys senior football management team is expected to be confirmed this weekend.
Also, Newcestown’s senior football fortunes will lie in the hands of their three-man selection of Tom Wilson, Seamus O’Donovan and Kevin Long, with the latter replacing Tim Buckley from the 2014 set up.
There has been no change to the management team of newly promoted Valley Rovers. Gerard Slyne remains in the hot seat as manager, along with Mick Murphy (coach), and TJ Deasy, Sean Murphy and Martin Cronin as selectors.
On the divisional front, Aidan McGurn is the new Beara senior football manager, having served as a selector last season. His backroom team is yet to be finalised.
In Carbery, Caheragh’s Gene O’Driscoll will remain on as senior football manager.