Shane Kilkenny interviews Dublin footballer Rory O’Carroll for our weekly “Player Corner” column
What teams do you regard as the biggest threats going forward and why?
I would rate Cork, Donegal and Kerry as the three biggest contenders for the All-Ireland, especially given Donegal and Cork’s recent form and after that emphatic win for Kerry over Tyrone they now look to be in the top three. I also think Kildare will be extremely difficult to stop.
Pat Gilroy’s set up is renowned for an intensive pre season training program. Could you offer some insight into a typical training week at the start of the year and the commitment that is required?
From talking to other inter-county players it is now not too much different to other county set-ups and what they do pre-season. Monday we do core work. Tuesday morning is a 40min running session with some ball work and shooting at the end. Tuesday evening is 55mins of football drills. Wednesday is a rest day. Thursday is the same as Tuesday, and we have the gym on Friday morning with a match on either the Saturday or Sunday in what is usually the O’ Byrne Cup or O’ Byrne Cup Shield.
What are the main challenges with playing the full back position at the highest level?
Concentration. One has to be ready for anything as often is possible, which is obviously easier said than done, but if a mistake is made a goal is usually the outcome.
You have won All Irelands at both club and county level. How did each experience compare?
Both were an incredible experience and very special, but particularly the one with the club.
How do you like to prepare yourself in the lead up to a big championship game?
I just have the same routine for every game and don’t change anything really. Ideally I like having the same routine for a training day as for a match day, being a student I can stay relaxed and conserve energy!.
Any unusual superstitions or rituals on match day?
Any hobbies outside of GAA?
I am interested in history and travelling as I like to experience other foods and cultures. Enjoy watching most sports on TV.
Who would your best friends on the Dublin squad be?
Michael Fitzsimons and Eoghan O’Gara.
What’s your party piece!?
Thankfully I don’t have one, and don’t particularly want one either!
What would you say is the strangest thing a manager/coach has said to you over the years? You don’t have to name and shame!
“Rory, you’re the worst man I know.”
Best piece of advice you have received?
Work, work and work again.
Thanks for your time Rory. Best of luck in the quarter-final.