Hurling manager Davy Fitzgerald has committed to the Wexford senior hurlers for at least another two seasons despite interest in his services from the Galway County Board as they look to rebuild west of the Shannon.
Fitzgerald announced the decision late last week after initially indicating to his own board chairman Derek Kent after defeat to Tipperary in August that the traveling from his Clare home was killing him.
Now the man who guided Wexford to the Leinster SHC title for the first time in 15 years this summer is to stay with the Yellow Bellies as they look to step up as All-Ireland contenders next year.
Speaking to RTE Sport after confirming his decision to remain in charge, Fitzgerald said, “It was a really hard decision. It took a lot of time. The travel from Clare to Wexford was a big consideration.
Massive Boost for Wexford as Davy Stays on for 2 more years. Hail💀Hail 🍓 pic.twitter.com/l9GkBEyVwX— Buff Egan (@buff_egan) September 26, 2019
“If you’re leaving home at half one, two o’clock in the day, and you’re getting back at one in the night, that’s a major factor. There were other personal issues in the middle of that.
“I did say to the Wexford chairman Derek Kent straight after the Tipp game that I just couldn’t do it anymore. He asked me to take a few weeks more to think about it. I did that and at the end of the day it was just very hard to walk away.
“Last Sunday, Monday, Tuesday I had 100 percent made my mind up to walk away. On Wednesday night I got a call and got a message from someone else and it probably changed my mind again.
“I just said, ‘You know what, I have an incredible bond with the lads and I’m going to go with my gut and just do this.’”
Like the Wexford players and supporters, Fitzgerald is of the belief that his squad can push on from their Leinster title this year and challenge the likes of All-Ireland champions Tipperary next summer.
“I think there’s massive potential. I believe that but the decision was probably made around people,” said Fitzgerald as Wexford look to win a first MacCarthy Cup since 1996.
“I think it’s going to be difficult enough. You’re probably going to have to look at one or two years if you’re going forward. After a year like that, sometimes it gets a bit flat the next year, and there could be a chance of that, so you’re looking at two years again to try and reach those heights.
“After getting to such heights it can be tough to go back again but by God we’re back there now and we’ll give it everything.”