Wexford’s Keith Rossiter and Kilkenny’s PJ Ryan have been recruited
NEW WEXFORD SENIOR hurling manager Davy Fitzgerald has included forward star Jack Guiney in a winter training squad of over 40 players.
Fitzgerald has also confirmed the make-up of his backroom team – with former county star Keith Rossiter and ex-Kilkenny goalkeeper PJ Ryan set to play key roles.
2015 Leinster club winner Rossiter, who will line out for Oulart-the-Ballagh against Offaly champions St Rynagh’s in next Sunday’s AIB Leinster senior club hurling championship tie, will be involved in a part-time coaching capacity, with 2009 All-Ireland final man-of-the-match Ryan brought in to coach the Wexford goalkeepers.
Former U21 manager JJ Doyle is the local link but Fitzgerald is also bringing two of his own former backroom men with him – Páraic Fanning and Seoirse Bulfin.
Davy Fitzgerald at the recent Wexford county senior hurling final
Source: Donall Farmer/INPHO
Bulfin worked alongside Fitzgerald at third-level with Limerick IT, and also with the Waterford and Clare inter-county teams, while Fanning was a member of Fitzgerald’s backroom team when he was in charge of the Déise.
Fitzgerald has also enlisted the services of three strength and conditioning coaches – Jimmy Payne, Darren Siggins and Ross Dunphy.
Payne moves with Bulfin from the Clare set-up to join Fitzgerald, while Siggins and Dunphy both worked for Seamus Plunkett during his time as Laois manager.
Dunphy has also worked with the Tipperary and Dublin senior hurling teams in recent times.
The return of former U21 star Guiney is a major boost to Fitzgerald as he looks ahead to his first season in charge of the Slaneysiders.
Wexford hurler Jack Guiney
Source: Cathal Noonan/INPHO
The 23-year-old forward opted out of the Wexford for personal reasons last April but he will provide a badly-needed extra attacking option next year, if he remains on board for the long haul.
Two other forwards – Rhys Clarke and Kevin Foley – have also returned, further boosting Fitzgerald’s pick.
Foley opted out last December for the 2016 campaign but did feature for JJ Doyle’s U21s, who were foiled in their bid for a fourth successive Leinster U21 crown by Dublin at the quarter-final stage.
Kevin Foley (right) celebrates Wexford’s Leinster U21 final win in 2015.
Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO
Ian Byrne, currently based in Dubai, is unavailable for the foreseeable future and cruciate ligament trio Andrew Shore, Liam Óg McGovern and Shane Tomkins will be sidelined until well into the New Year.
Shore and Tomkins, who both underwent surgery on the same day in June, are targeting returns in March while McGovern is aiming for a summer comeback.
After overseeing pre-season strength and conditioning work, Fitzgerald is planning to whittle down his extended squad in mid-January, ahead of the start of the Allianz Hurling League campaign.
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