Wed, Nov
10 New Articles

Rowland has no regrets over Mayo


IN THE RUNNING Declan Shaw was one of the candidates for the Mayo senior manager's job earlier this year. Pic: Sportsfile

Michael Gallagher

WHEN James Horan stepped away from his role as manager of the Mayo senior team in July a flurry of interest was generated about his successor. Eventually four management teams entered the race to succeed him and Cormac Rowland’s name was included in the group put forward by Declan Shaw.
The former Castlebar Mitchels boss assembled a formidable team with former Dublin star Paddy Christie, ex Mayo and Castlebar Mitchels player Richie Feeney and Sligo’s Dessie Sloyan joining Rowland in the proposed backroom.
Ultimately, the cards didn’t fall their way, but Rowland holds no grudges and says the experience was a very positive one.
“I was honoured to be asked to be involved,” he told The Mayo News. “Declan put a really good team together and we put our best foot forward. There was a very strong coterie of candidates running for the job and that was a good thing. I was very excited by the thought of being involved but it wasn’t to be.
“Kevin (McStay) and the boys got the job and I wish them nothing but success. They’re looking for the extra three or four percent which will get us to where we all want to be and with a little luck they’ll find it,” he said before we asked if there was a moment when he thought they would be successful.
“In the infancy there was a huge excitement about being in the running and in the middle period of it we felt we had a real chance of success. We kept our heads down and focused on getting everything right in the background and it was a very interesting few weeks.
“The competition was top-drawer and when Kevin got the job I remember reading an article stating how many inter-county championship games he and his team had been involved in.
“It illustrated how experienced they were. We gave it our best shot and that’s all we could have done.”
Rowland is no stranger to the green and red himself, starting off in the School of Excellence under Fr Tommy Towey in 1997.
The following year a Ted Webb medal at Under-16 level was captured under the tutelage of Eugene Ivers and Billy McNicholas before featuring in two runs to All-Ireland minor finals with JP Kean in 1999 and 2000.
Despite those setbacks on the biggest days of all, Rowland is adamant that it won’t be long before a Mayo man climbs into the Hogan Stand and hoists Sam Maguire towards the heavens.
“We must not forget how successful Mayo football is right now and has been for more than a decade. My first Mayo match was the 1989 All-Ireland final when I was six. It was also my father’s first time seeing Mayo in a final. The period from 1951 to ’89 was a barren one compared to the great times we’re having now.
“To win a final, one has to get to it and the more finals we get to the more chance we’re going to win one.”


Latest Sport

Geelong’s gain is Mayo’s loss

FOOTBALL Edwin McGreal says it’s hard to argue with Oisin Mullin’s decision to move to Australia to play professional sport

Read more ...

‘Survival of clubs’ no minor issue

FOOTBALL A leading Mayo club manager and a Mayo GAA official are concerned about the GAA’s underage grade proposals

Read more ...

‘Serious concerns’ about MacHale Park pitch

GAA The condition of the playing surface at Hastings Insurance MacHale Park was described as ‘a very serious concern’ at last week’s meeting of the County Board

Read more ...

Lacken and Kilfian to come together

GAA Two North Mayo clubs, who have both struggled to field teams in recent times, have agreed to seek permission to play together at adult level next year

Read more ...

Ballinrobe’s Duffy ready to go again

FOOTBALL Diarmuid Duffy has had a busy season with the Mayo Under-17s and his club, but he’s all set for colleges football with Ballinrobe Community School

Read more ...