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Hurling: Lough is open for Tribe job.

THE way was cleared last night for Ger Loughnane to become the new Galway hurling manager after Mattie Murphy and Sean Silke withdrew from the contest.

Intense lobbying the by Galway hurling board in the aftermath of Loughnane's decision to withdraw his name from the contest led to Murphy and Silke withdrawing.

Loughnane - whose nomination received huge support from Galway clubs on Tuesday night - stunned Galway officials when he said he was no longer interested in taking the job.

Loughnane told officials he wouldn't allow his name to go forward if there was a contest for the position.

Three of the six nominated - Davey Fitzgerald, Pat O'Connor and Sean Treacy - withdrew, clearing the way for Loughnane.

But with Silke and Murphy remaining in the race, Loughnane took the decision to remove himself as a candidate.

That led to a day of intense activity in Galway hurling circles yesterday.

The players issued a statement saying they still believed Loughnane was the best man for the job, while hurling board officials asked Silke and Murphy to withdraw in the hope that Loughnane could be enticed back.

Silke said in a statement: "I would like to announce that following a request from the Galway hurling board chairman, Miko Ryan, I am now withdrawing my name from the contest for the Galway senior hurling manager's position."

Murphy also issued a statement as he withdrew but indicated he would re-enter if Loughnane could not be enticed back.

CAPTION(S):

WANTED: Loughnane
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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Sep 16, 2006
Words:246
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