Trent Johnston leaves Railway Union
Ger Siggins (Irish Daily Star)
FORMER Ireland captain Trent Johnston will not be playing or coaching with Railway Union this season.
The 37 year old all-rounder has decided to pursue his future career path as a coach by moving clubs in what could be his last year playing for Ireland.
"As my desire is to continue to gain senior coaching experience I have advised [club management] that I will not be coaching or playing at Railway this season", he told his team-mates last night.
Railway recently opted to redirect its coaching focus into development.
"I have enjoyed working with all of you and hope that in some way I have helped your growth as a player," he told Railway's squad.
"It's been an amazing five years on the field as well - I'll sum it up in two words 'trophies' and 'banter'."
Johnston's spell at Park Avenue saw the club win the senior league for the first time since 1962 and senior cup since 1968.
The one gap on his glittering CV is the Bob Kerr Irish Senior Cup and he will be keen to join a club that can challenge for that title.
Meanwhile, it was announced yesterday that James Shannon will lead his country out at Lord's later this month in his first game as Ireland A captain.
The game at the home of cricket takes place on Monday April 23, and the 22 year old Instonians bat is thrilled with the promotion.
"It is a great honour and privilege to firstly be selected, and secondly captain such a strong A side.
"It is a fantastic opportunity being part of the squad, and to be playing at Lords against the MCC."
Shannon has 16 A caps and impressed with a brilliant 123 against Sussex 2nd XI last August, which saw him drafted into the senior squad for the Intercontinental Cup games with Namibia and Canada.
Three full caps are named in Rory McCann, Graeme McCarter and Peter Connell.
Connell, who won the last of his 56 caps two years ago, and will be keen to impress Phil Simmons, who is taking charge of the A team for the game.
Other interesting selections are Merrion's South African born all-rounder John Anderson and Pembroke's promising U19 fast bowler Barry McCarthy.
IRELAND A squad: James Shannon (Instonians, captain), Ben Ackland (Merrion & Cambridge University), John Anderson (Merrion), Peter Connell (CIYMS), Tom Fisher (Railway Union), Rory McCann (Instonians), Graeme McCarter (Fox Lodge & Gloucestershire), Barry McCarthy (Pembroke), Niall McDonnell (Strabane), Lee Nelson (Waringstown), Stuart Thompson (Limavady), Ben Wylie (Instonians).