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It's time to coach the coaches says Rogan

By John Campbell

Ger Rogan, who stepped down as Derry hurling manager two weeks ago, is urging that steps must be taken to address what he feels are "familiar mistakes" which, he contends, are blighting the sport.

The former Antrim player, who also spent three years as Armagh manager, believes that not enough is being done to improve the quality of play at inter-county level within the problem.

"The fact of the matter is that mistakes which were being made by players 15 years ago are still being made today," insists Rogan.

"I honestly think it is time to coach the coaches properly. The disappointing aspect of hurling as I see it is that these mistakes are part and parcel of the sport even though we have a lot more coaches available nowadays. What does that tell you?"

The straight-talking Rogan, who believes the bar is being continually raised for even the very best hurlers from the province because of the performances of county teams from Leinster and Munster in particular, also posts a warning for players who make it onto county squads.

"A lot of lads believe they have made it when they finally get to wear a county jersey but this is really only a starting point for them. They have to be able to push on from there and improve their game further," raps Rogan.

And he issues a special plea to the Ulster Council.

"I would just like the Ulster Council to listen to hurling people at grassroots level and take their views on board. There are issues surrounding dual players, coaching and the preparation of teams that require to be addressed as a matter of urgency," he adds.

While he admits that "good work" is being done in connection with the coaching of young players, there is a need for more concentrated coaching at a higher level.

"This is where I feel it is essential that the actual coaches should be coached properly and then I think we would see a raising of standards and the hurling gospel would be spread further," points out Rogan.

"I would just love to help the Ulster Council in any way I can to achieve what I think needs to be done."

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