Belfast Telegraph

Chairman Bill McCotter hails Belfast Star's character

By David Kelly

Belfast Star chairman Bill McCotter believes the club has moved forward and is in good shape for the future.

Star made a poor start to the All Ireland Premier League but gradually turned their fortunes around, finishing with three straight victories including a huge win over second-placed Swords Thunder.

Chairman McCotter has watched not only the players develop but also son Neal, who has been coaching the side for the first time.

It was certainly a baptism of fire for Neal who galvanised the young side after six straight defeats.

Dad Bill said: "I think the players deserve a lot of credit for how they came back into the league. They showed a lot of character, they're a good bunch of lads.

"It was a tough time for Neal but as the season went on he grew in confidence and he has learned a lot as a coach this season.

"I think it has to be said that Neal has been helped a lot by having Danny Fulton with him on the bench. Danny's experience is invaluable and the way he respected a young coach was admirable.

"Overall, I think we have to be happy with how the club has moved forward."

Chairman Bill was also quick to hail the impact of Ricky Taylor this year, though he expects the American to be snapped up by a European team for next season.

"Ricky was one of the easiest Americans I have ever had to deal with. There was no big ego and the respect he has had for the whole team and the coaches has helped a lot," added Bill.

"He scored a lot of points for us but it was his team ethic that really stood out for me."

Star will seek to make it four straight wins tomorrow night when they travel to Kilkenny in the quarter-finals of the Plate. Victory would likely set up a semi against Killester.

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