GAME TIME Eoghan McGrath (left) is pictured with his brother Lorcan in MacHale Park.
Name: Eoghan McGrath
Occupation: Owner of DE Sports
It’s fair to say every day is different for me, so a typical day in the life isn’t really typical at all, but I’ll have a go at describing one. I run my company, DE Sports from home in Pullathomas and I love it. Living in Erris is ideal for me. I love it and operating from here gives me the time and space to develop my business.
To be honest, the quietest part of my day is the morning, so I certainly wouldn’t be up at 6am unless I had to be on the road with a big order. I’d usually roll out of the cot just after 8 and have to admit that I’m partial to a fry, so sometimes I’ll treat myself.
Of course, being heavily involved in sport, I’m acutely aware of nutrition, so I usually settle for cereal, juice and water, but the odd fry certainly features some mornings.
DE Sports was set up as a sportswear company but has branched out into match-analysis and sports equipment and now many mornings are occupied with breaking down videos of matches. I might have 15 games to do after some weekends so Monday and Tuesday can be very busy in that regard.
Initially, all the games I worked on were Gaelic football but now I’m branching into rugby too and that has given me another string to the bow.
Typically, that match analysis stuff will take me to lunchtime and I’ll always try to fuel up at that stage to take me through the rest of the day. I’ve recently built a warehouse here in Pullathomas, so there will be a lot of deliveries coming in and orders going out.
I supply a lot of teams with playing gear and leisure-wear and I really enjoy this aspect of the business. The whole idea started when I was in second-year in UCD. I was playing Sigerson football and we were looking for gloves. Two of my friends, David and Eoin, and I looked into getting gloves made for the team and DE Sports was born. We weren’t too adventurous with the name – just took our initials and went from there. We got the gloves and that seemed to be the end of the road for the business. One day, I thought a bit more about developing it and the boys thought I was mad, so I bought them out for €30 each.
I was doing Sports and Exercise Management in UCD at the time and we went on to win the Sigerson in 2018 with Stephen Coen as captain and Seán Conlon from Castlebar also in the team. I went on to UL then and did a Masters in Sports Performance which has helped me greatly.
I like working for myself because I’m obsessed with sport and this life gives me the opportunity to work in the industry and also develop my strength and conditioning expertise as well.
I was S&C coach with the Mayo minor team this season and loved that. I also work with a number of clubs in this area and find it hugely interesting. Every human is different and getting the best out of people individually and as part of a group is fantastic.
This involvement takes up a lot of my evenings. I also train three or four teams here at home in Cill Chomain. I look after the Ladies team which is something I really enjoy and I also try to play football with Cill Chomain and hurling with Ballina Stephenites.
Training teams, working on S&C with others and playing football and hurling myself gives me a different perspective from the business, but it’s all entwined in sport and I love that.
I really enjoy supplying good-quality, cool gear to clubs and now the sports equipment side of things is really taking off too. I invested in recovery-boots a few months ago and they have proved to be massively successful. I even sold a consignment in Australia recently.
When do I find time to relax? As often as possible, because it’s hugely important. Every night I try to switch off the head for a while and catch up with my girlfriend, the most patient woman on earth, and my friends from college. I love the Playstation or watching a bit of telly and then head for the leaba to be ready for the following day.
Every day is different and that’s the way I like it.
In conversation with Michael Gallagher
If money was no object what would you do?
I’d still do what I’m currently doing, doesn’t seem like work when it‘s your passion.
Tell us something about yourself we don’t know?
I’d be fond of a Chinese takeaway or two every so often. Have to balance the diet some way.
What’s the most unusual thing you’ve eaten?
I’d be a very plain eater so I wouldn’t venture too far away from the norm.
Where’s your favourite place in the world?
Can’t beat a warm sunny day in Erris.
What makes you angry?
When people are indecisive, it drives me up the wall.
Your first hero?
My mam, Breda. She’s some woman, wouldn’t be where I am if it wasn’t for her.
What makes you nervous?
Anything involving heights, or Eoin Kennedy let loose on a Go-Karting Track. God only knows how he got his driver’s licence!
Favourite TV show?
Name three things that are always in your fridge?
Sausages, milk and garlic bread.
What do miss most about being a kid?
Having no responsibilities, not a care in the world.
Best advice you ever got?
If you’re not first, you’re last.
Describe yourself in three words?
Driven, hard-working and stubborn (don’t know if that’s a good or bad thing).
How do you unwind?
Most evenings end up playing PlayStation with my friends. Pro-clubs can be hectic some nights!