Cats shake-up: Cody loses Dempsey from backroom team, Lyng to follow
By Colin Bartley
BRIAN Cody looks likely to extend his reign as Kilkenny Hurling manager but his backroom team for 2020 will be unrecognisable.
Two of Cody’s most trusted generals have decided to step away from the Kilkenny backroom team.
For the first time in 15 seasons, Mick Dempsey will not be prowling the sideline alongside the Cats boss.
Dempsey has been a part of Brian Cody’s backroom team since 2005 as a selector and a strength and conditioning coach. Dempsey’s arrival coincided with the golden era of Kilkenny hurling.
Dempsey, who had previously been Laois’s football manager, during his tenure has overseen an unprecedented eight All-Ireland, 10 Leinster titles and seven National Hurling League titles.
It is believed the six-time All-Ireland winner and selector for the past six seasons, Derek Lyng is also set to leave the set up.
Both departures from the Kilkenny set-up will leave a huge void in the Cats backroom team. The Liam McCarthy has not come back to the Marble county since 2015, the longest period of Brian Cody’s reign and it may be the departures will have a dead cat bounce effect on the Kilkenny team in 2020.
Former Cats goalie James McGarry is expected to remain in his role.
The Cats camogie team have also confirmed their management team for the 2020 season in the wake of Ann Downey’s retirement.
Brian Dowling, a former All-Ireland winner and coach of the Cats camogie team this year was ratified last night at a meeting of the Kilkenny County Board. Brian will be joined by selectors Tommy Shefflin and Ray Challenor.