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Stenson defends process in choosing Ros' football boss

Story by Tom Kelly

Tuesday, 11th December, 2012 3:33pm

Stenson defends process in choosing Ros' football boss

Roscommon senior football manager John Evans ... Roscommon GAA secretarty Brian Stenson has defending the county board's managerial appointment process.

Roscommon GAA secretary Brian Stenson has defended the county board's process in appointing John Evans as senior team manager.

There was disgruntlement in some quarters about a perceived level of secrecy involved in the process.

In his address to county delegates, scheduled for this coming weekend, Brian Stenson will also discuss the topics of holding less County Board meetings, and also the continued quest for the Board to purchase outright Dr Hyde Park.

In his annual report, Mr Stenson said: "When Des Newton stepped down as senior team manager in September, Chairman Michael Fahey was mandated by Coiste Contae to put a selection committee in place. There was no ultimatum that the new manager had to be from within the county, and clubs were requested to submit nominations.

"Only one club responded with a nomination. Michael consulted widely before selecting Gay Sheeran, Danny Murray and Michael McGuire to help find a replacement. The two Michaels, Gay and Danny, listened, consulted, made phone calls, conducted interviews, travelled the highways and bye-ways, over a four week period. From the outset, it was said that there would be no comment from the Committee during the process, and it was also agreed they would not discuss what they were doing with the officers of the Board, but consequently this succeeded in annoying some supporters.

"On November 8, they came back to a specially convened meeting of Coiste Contae with the name of John Evans for ratification. John was unanimously ratified as manager for a two-year period, an appointment that has generally been well-received throughout the county. Gay Sheeran and Walter Burke are the two selectors, and I wish the entire management team well in their new roles."

Stenson also called into question the impact of County Board meetings, saying: "In the past I have been critical of County Board meetings and their contribution to the overall running of the GAA in the county. My opinion has not changed. A full turn-out at a County Board would have 83 people present, which, in my opinion, is not manageable in terms of constructive debate and decision-making. I believe it would be better if management of the affairs of the board was entrusted to the management committee, plus a number of club representatives, five, six or ten, elected at Convention. A quarterly general meeting of all clubs would then suffice. I know that such change would require a change in our bye laws."

Furthermore, he expressed disappointment that the transfer of ownership of Dr Hyde Park has yet to be finalised.

"It is a great disappointment to everyone involved that the transfer of ownership of Dr Hyde Park, and the purchase of land for a training ground at Runnabracken, have not been completed. Both projects are with solicitors and the delays are not caused by anyone involved locally. I sincerely hope both processes will be completed early in 2013.

"The lease on our office property has expired and we have entered negotiations with the landlord for a renewal of the lease, which we hope will conclude satisfactorily in the near future."

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