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'I Was More Fatigued From Listening To People In The Banquet Than I Was The Whole Game'

'I Was More Fatigued From Listening To People In The Banquet Than I Was The Whole Game'
PJ Browne
By PJ Browne
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For some Dublin players, there was little time to rest after their All-Ireland final replay win against Mayo. A week later, many were back in action with their clubs for round two of the Dublin SFC.

Philly McMahon was one of them - his Ballymun side beat St. Brigid's on Sunday. For McMahon, the transition back to club football was easier than it was for others. He does not drink. The All-Ireland victory celebrations took less of a toll on him than it did on others.

I'm a teetotaller, so it was fine for me. I'm sure the other lads struggled. You'd probably have to look at the club championship and see how many of them played well and how many of them drank and is that an influence in it. It was fine for me because I was marking Paddy Andrews and he was sober as well.

Despite McMahon's abstinence, it still was not easy. He says an All-Ireland final is not a normal game. Physically and mentally, it extracts more from you than any other 70 minutes.

It was a tough couple of days to get the body right. When you play an All-Ireland final, you probably cover between 7 - 11 kilometres. You'd probably cover that throughout the Championship but it's like covering 16 or 17 kilometres in an All-Ireland final because the intensity, the environment, everything that goes around it makes you tired and fatigued.

Your body takes about three or four days to recover. We got back training with the club on the Friday night only. We played the match on the Saturday.


There's not just the drain of the game either. There's everything that goes with it. As with every All-Ireland final victory, Dublin players attended a post-match banquet.


Using a dollop of hyperbole, McMahon said that having the same conversations throughout the evening is more mentally taxing than the game itself.

Sometimes it's hard to block out but you have to accept it. Someone comes up to you talking about beating Mayo, beating Mayo; if you block that out you're actually losing that battle. You kind of just have to accept and realise that these people, that's what they connect with you about. They understand you as a footballer and that's what they're going to start the conversation about. You kind of just have to go 'OK that's fine. Alright. Yeah.' Just accept it. You can't let it get to you so much that it influences your thinking of the game.

Put it this way, I was more fatigued from listening to people in the banquet that night than I was the whole game. You're just hearing the same thing, the same thing and I'm not drinking. I'm drinking water and people are saying the same thing, the same thing. You have to be respectful, you have to listen. You're fatigued more after that than by the game. That's tough in itself. It's what people connect to you with and you just have to be nice I guess and talk to them.

Photo by Piaras Ó Mídheach/Sportsfile

Dublin GAA Star and fitness entrepreneur, Philly McMahon was speaking at the launch of the Ireland Active Conference and White Flag National Quality Awards. The awards are the national quality standard for leisure and fitness facilities and are taking place on 11th November at the Hodson Bay Hotel in Athlone at which Philly is a keynote speaker.



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