*Photograph: Gerard O’Neill
SHANNON teacher Padraic Duddy has joined the management of the Galway U20 hurling team while Clooney/Quin’s Fergal Lynch will not be involved with the side next year.
Manus-based Duddy is part of Fergal Healy’s management team which were appointed for a three year term.
Healy a former Galway senior hurler who won National League titles with the Tribesmen in 2000 and 2004 makes the step up from minor manager, a role he held in 2022 and 2023. Duddy was one of his selectors earlier this year as they came up short against the Brian O’Connell managed Clare in the All-Ireland minor final.
His management includes five-time All Star Joe Canning, 2017 All-Ireland winner James Skehill who had a brief stint as coach of the Newmarket-on-Fergus senior hurlers in 2019, Eamon Cleary and Duddy.
A secondary school teacher at St Caimin’s Community School in Shannon for over two decades, Duddy has previously managed the Loughrea senior hurlers to contest the 2009 county final and coached the Tubber senior hurlers over a decade ago.
Alongside Alan Cunningham, he was over the first St Caimin’s side to contest the final of the Dr Harty Cup when they lost out to Thurles CBS in the 2009 decider, a team which included future All-Ireland winner Podge Collins.
Healy’s management succeeds the outgoing Brian Hanley who led Galway to two All-Ireland minor hurling titles before moving onto the U20 role. Galway last won the U20 competition in 2011 when it was then U21.
For the past two seasons, 2013 All-Ireland winner with Clare, Fergal Lynch was part of Hanley’s U20 management. The Quin principal had coached Castlegar’s senior hurlers before joining the Galway management.
Lynch managed the Clare’s minor hurlers in 2019 when they exited at the All-Ireland quarter-final stage losing by two points to eventual winners Galway. They also contested the Munster final having won three of their four group games to reach the decider.
Hanley’s management also included Ciaran Callanan and Keith Daniels. When Feakle GAA approached Lynch to coach their senior hurlers at the beginning of the year, he was unable to commit to the role but instead recommended Callanan who has guided the East Clare club to a first Clare SHC semi-final appearance since 2016.