Kieran Kingston has stepped down as Cork senior hurling manager after two years in charge. 

Kingston today informed the Cork county board that he would not be taking up the offer of a second term. 

The Cork county board have released a statement saying that Kingston had met with county board officials to review the year and was offered a further two-year term.

After considering the offer over the weekend, Kingston decided to step aside. 

County board chairman Ger Lane commented:  "It’s a huge disappointment to see Kieran leave this position after such huge progress during the two years of his management. The performances of the team throughout the League and Championship were a direct result of Kieran’s input and he has left Cork hurling in a very good place."

After a difficult first year at the helm in 2016, when Cork were dumped out of the championship in July by Wexford, the county experienced an unexpected renaissance under Kingston's stewardship in 2017.

They beat Tipperary, Waterford and Clare en route to claiming a thrilling Munster title victory, in which young players like Mark Coleman were especially prominent. 

Kingston celebrating with his backroom team after the 2017 Munster final

They entered the All-Ireland semi-final against Waterford as favourites but succumbed to a late goal splurge from Waterford following Damien Cahalane's sending off. 

Lane paid tribute to the work Kingston did during his two years in his charge, saying he has left the team in a strong position.  

"Our board had an outstanding relationship with Kieran and his backroom team and we are very sorry to see his departure. Many new players got the opportunity to develop under his management and proved their worth in Championship 2017 only  going down to Waterford in the All Ireland Semi Final. 

"Kieran has laid a very solid foundation and left the team in a very good position and on behalf of all in Cork GAA, I wish to sincerely thank him for his wonderful contribution to Cork hurling.

"I would hope Kieran will stay involved in some capacity with Cork  but I fully understand the demands on an inter-county manager and I wish him the very best for the future.