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Tom Devine Statement Proves Again Why Waterford Is An Example To The GAA World

Tom Devine Statement Proves Again Why Waterford Is An Example To The GAA World
By Balls Team Updated
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There's big news from Waterford hurling tonight as Deise forward Tom Devine confirmed he is stepping away for the panel this summer to go travelling. Devine added in a statement that he is doing so with the approval of Derek McGrath and Dan Shanahan.

Perhaps this shouldn't be news, but in 2017, given the encroaching professionalism of modern GAA, and considering the wild hunger in Waterford for an All-Ireland, Devine's decision proves again why Derek McGrath is the most progressive manager in the GAA today.

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Devine is 21 and has given two summers to the Waterford senior panel. He's a medical student in UCC, and given the demands of his profession and the pressures of sport, he has a very small window to experience something every 21-year-old should: a few months travelling the world.

In his statement, Devine praised McGrath and Dan Shanahan for their 'holistic' approach to management and confirmed that he's leaving with their approval.

Derek and Dan have always had a holistic attitude towards both life and sport and have always wanted the best for us players in all aspects of life. I’m glad to be leaving with their blessing, and it’s been both a pleasure and an honour to have been involved with men of their calibre.

McGrath is under almighty pressure to bring Liam MacCarthy to Waterford but he has willingly allowed one of his best forwards to see the world as a wide-open Championship looms. Devine has been a central part of Waterford's success under Derek McGrath. He was on that barnstorming Deise minor team that won an All-Ireland in 2013 and has been part of the Waterford senior panel since 2015. Last season's Championship proved how badly Waterford need scoring forwards and the fact that McGrath allowed Devine to step away for the Championship indicates an atypical attitude towards man-management.

You can read the entire statement below.

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On Monday last I informed Derek and  Dan of my decision to travel for the summer coming 2017.

With college and career demands looming large in the next year or two, this is essentially my last chance to travel for a summer. It’s something I’ve always wanted to do but have been putting off for a few years now, and this year I simply can’t pass the opportunity to travel.

The decision was not an easy one to make on my behalf.

It has been an amazing experience for me to have been involved with such a professional, yet close-knit and supportive set up over the last 4 years.

I’d like to personally thank the players, backroom team and especially Derek and Dan for everything they’ve done. The work put in by everyone involved is staggering and not always appreciated by those outside of the panel and backroom team.

Derek and Dan have always had a holistic attitude towards both life and sport and have always wanted the best for us players in all aspects of life. I’m glad to be leaving with their blessing, and it’s been both a pleasure and an honour to have been involved with men of their calibre.

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