Michael Fennelly’s time with the Offaly senior hurlers has come to an end, with the Offaly county board opting not to extend his term in charge.
Appointed as manager in 2019, the Shamrocks Ballyhale clubman led the Faithful County to promotion in Division 2A of the Allianz National Hurling League in 2021 before claiming the Christy Ring Cup and in the process returning Offaly to the Joe McDonagh Cup this summer.
The 2022 National Hurling League proved tough with the county failing to register a win against Wexford, Cork, Galway, Limerick or Clare while they narrowly missed out on the Joe McDonagh Cup, falling to Carlow in the final group game to send Kerry and Antrim through to the decider.
Results in the league saw Offaly relegated back to Division 2 for the 2023 season.
“I’ve three years basically done at this stage and that’s what was agreed at the very start”, Fennelly told Midlands 103 earlier this week.
“There could be a case of appetite for a new manager in Offaly maybe. Maybe I brought them as far as I can go under my management.”
Last November he announced the addition of former Galway intercounty player Tony Óg Regan, Coolderry’s Barry Teehan and strength and conditioning coach Brendan Egan to his backroom team.
Much like Kilkenny, Dublin and Waterford, Offaly will now be on the search for a new manager for the 2023 season.
Statement from Offaly GAA
A statement issued by Offaly GAA on Tuesday afternoon reads
“Offaly GAA wish to sincerely thank Michael Fennelly for his dedication and commitment as manager of the Offaly senior hurling team for the past three years. Together with all the members of his management and backroom team, Micahel always carried out his duties in a professional and courteous manner. Offaly GAA will this week begin the process of appointing a new senior hurling manager for 2023.”
“County Board Chairman Michael Duignan said that Michael Fennelly instilled into the Offaly set-up the high standards which he displayed as one of Kilkenny’s greatest ever hurlers. He said Michael did his very best to improve the fortunes of Offaly hurling during a three year period which had many interruptions due to the Covid-19 pandemic and wished him and his family all the best for the future.”