Monday, 23rd July 2018
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McGrath steps down from Deise

After five seasons in charge, Derek McGrath has resigned his position as Waterford Senior Hurling Manager.

Having led the Déise to five finals including last year's All-Ireland decider, in the wake of Sunday's Munster SHC defeat to Cork, a week after their exit from the Championship was confirmed, he confirmed his departure in a statement issued through Waterford GAA.

"After five thoroughly enjoyable years working with the most committed, dedicated, honest and genuine players to represent our county." McGrath had plenty of praise for the Waterford players, the backroom team and his work colleagues as well as his family and friends, which he expressed in a heartfelt letter of resignation as well as how it was a "hugely emotional" decision.

But he hasn't ruled out a return to management in the future.

"It's not that I have no more to give but I'm certainly saturated in terms of what I have given and I don't think there is any more I can give at this given time and I think I need recharging. Maybe a sabbatical from it and not to rule out going back to it in the future but a period of recharging." Speaking of how he weighed up the situation in light of recent injury woes and bad luck such as the now infamous 'ghost goal' McGrath said "Over the last few weeks I had a number of approaches from players given what had happened with the injury situation and the ill-luck with the 'ghost goal' and the home and away games and all the things that were stacked in favour of us saying, 'Jesus, we'll give it one more go'. "And I did weigh it up but I only did it temporarily… I got texts from Nickey English and well-known people in the GAA world saying 'you should give it another year, you got no luck'. So there are a lot of excuses there.

"I had a 15pc possibility in my head of saying yes I think they are right, I'll go back. But my mind was more leaning towards needing a break and returning to the classroom as well. I'm looking forward to that."

McGrath waiting until after Michael 'Brick' Walsh's reception celebrating his 74th appearance in the championship following the Thurles game to announce his decision. "I didn't make an announcement immediately after the match in Thurles. We went to the Horse and Jockey in the privacy of our own circle. I was conscious that it was Brick's day as well and not to take from it. It was huge. We had a bit of a reception for him afterwards and we were waiting for him to come in and give him a standing ovation and a presentation so I was conscious of not sharing that moment."

Speaking on local radio since McGrath has called on more sophisticated score detection technology to be installed at all county venues to ensure fairness.

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