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Derek McGrath Admits Major Regret Of His Waterford Reign

Derek McGrath Admits Major Regret Of His Waterford Reign
By PJ Browne Updated

Derek McGrath has said that one of his major regrets from his time as Waterford hurling manager is not meeting in person a number of players to tell them they were being released from his panel.

In the autumn of 2014 - his first season in charge of the Deise over - McGrath jettisoned several players from the group.

"That was difficult," McGrath told RTÉ Radio One's Today With Sean O'Rourke.

"We had a parent-teacher meeting at school and I phoned those eight or nine lads. I look back on that decision with real regret that I didn't meet those players face-to-face.

"Some players who had given great service to the county - Jamie Nagle, Liam Lawlor, Ray Barry, Richie Foley - I gave them 45 seconds on the phone.

"I often look back with regret on that particular decision.

"That sense of change, you had to do it. In year one, I was almost led and said by others. I became a bit of a control freak as the whole thing went on.

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"I was a poor delegator, particularly in the last year in the job, almost overburdening myself with aspects of preparation that I shouldn't be."

The 42-year-old - a teacher at De La Salle College - also gave some insight into the dedication he gave to the job during his five years.

It wouldn't be an exaggeration to say that you're probably looking at 60 hours a week. That sounds over the top but it depends on the character as well.

I probably took the most publicised parental leave in the history to do the job. Most people would see teaching as an ideal scenario for doing an inter-county job but I just found that I was not 100 per cent in the classroom. So, I took some parental leave to concentrate on the job over the past two years.

In a county like Waterford where there's an absolutely longing to make a breakthrough, I think you have to immerse yourself completely in it. The part-time nature of it, I found it difficult to switch away from it. Some people will deal with that in a completely different manner - when they go home, they're able to switch away and go back to a normal family life. I just found it a bit more difficult.

Photo by Ray McManus/Sportsfile

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