ANTHONY Daly stepped down from the Dublin senior hurling manager’s role earlier this week after a fine spell in charge which significantly evolved the cause of Dublin hurling, bringing the Metropolitans to their first National League title in 72 years and a first Leinster championships crown in 52 years over the course of his tenure.
The Clare native steps down after six years in the role after a low-key 2014 campaign that saw Dublin see off Wexford in the Leinster senior hurling championship semi-final, but succumb to Kilkenny by 12 points in the provincial decider.
They subsequently fell by 13 points to Tipperary in the All-Ireland quarter-final in late July and while there was speculation that Daly would stay on for another year, the Sixmilebridge man brought down the curtain on this phase of his management career last Monday evening.
“I just wanted to give myself as much time to make sure that I was doing the right thing, and just to sound the lads out about what they were feeling,” Daly said of the decision.
“That’s life — there’s a certain lifespan in everything and I think it’s the best move for everybody, for players and maybe management for a fresh approach to come in. There are still good players in there.”
Confirming the decision, the Dublin County Board paid tribute to Daly and his considerable success in ending the trophy drought for the Dubs: “Anthony served as Dublin manager for six years and during that period brought us back to the top table in the game.
“His loyalty to the cause, his expertise, his charisma and drive were key factors as Dublin climbed back up the rankings and moved forward from being one of the also-rans.
“Anthony leaves Dublin in a much healthier position having retained our Division 1A status earlier this year.
“While this year ended in disappointment, we enjoyed some incredible days during his term.
“We wish to take this opportunity to thank Anthony and his management teams during his time for all their incredible work and dedication as well as the colour that his great personality brought to Dublin hurling.
“Dublin GAA wish Anthony and his selectors, Ciarn Hetherton, Richie Stakelum, Shane Martin and the rest of his management team, all the best for the future.”
A decision on Daly’s replacement will be made in due course.