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Inside the mind of some Mayo stars

Sport

Sarah Quinn
Athletics

Age: 22
Club: St Colman’s
Living: Ballinrobe
Occupation: Student

What three words would you use to describe your sporting career in 2020?
Different, rollercoaster, fulfilling.

What was your sporting highlight of the last 12 months?
Becoming the double National Senior Sprint Hurdles champion.

What was your biggest sporting disappointment of the last 12 months?
I wouldn’t be one to focus on negatives, but if I were to say anything I would say not being able to compete in international competitions due to Covid. That was definitely a bump in the road.

What’s your sporting New Year’s resolution?
Put more emphasis on prehab work.

Best live/virtual sports event you attended/watched in the last 12 months?
The National Senior Athletics Championships in Dublin, although I wasn’t allowed to be there in person for my friends’ races I could cheer them on virtually!

Who is your ‘one to watch’ for you sport in 2021?
Definitely Alex Lee. He is Ireland’s first blade runner and with a bit of luck he will be competing at the Paralympic Games in Tokyo 2021! He’s an inspiration to everyone in our training group.

Who will win the Sam Maguire cup in 2021?
Mayo!

Three people you’d like to train with?
Derval O’Rourke, Sally Pearson, Liz Clay.

Three things you can’t live without?
My car, Avonmore chocolate protein milk and Spotify

Your 2021 motto in three words?
Aspire to inspire.

Rachel Kearns
Ladies football

What three words would you use to describe your sporting career in 2020?
Unexpected, dissimilar, under-achieved.

What was your sporting highlight of the last 12 months?
Reached the county intermediate final after only being promoted last year.

What was your biggest sporting disappointment of the last 12 months?
Not playing to our team’s potential in the county final.

What’s your sporting New Year’s resolution?
Play for fun.

Best live/virtual sports event you attended/watched in the last 12 months?
Cavan v Donegal – Ulster Final.

Who is your ‘one to watch’ for you sport in 2021?
Sinead Walsh (McHale Rovers) – talented, up and coming young girl.

Who will win the Sam Maguire cup in 2021?
Can’t ever see Dublin loosing .

Three people you’d like to train with?
Michael Murphy, David Clifford, Katie Taylor.

Three things you can’t live without?
Car, music, family

Your 2021 motto in three words?
Be the sh*t without sh*tting on anybody!

Laura Moran
Boxing

Age: 16
Club: St Anne’s BC
Living: Westport
Occupation: Student

What three words would you use to describe your sporting  career in 2020?
Up and down.

What was your sporting highlight of the last 12 months?
Definitely winning the Cadets in February and qualifying for the Europeans.

What was your biggest sporting disappointment of the last 12 months?
Not being able to go to Europeans due to Covid-19.

What’s your sporting New Year’s resolution?
To get fitter, stronger and try to win the All-Ireland if it goes ahead!

Best sports event you attended/watched in the last 12 months?
Katie Taylor’s rematch with Delfine Persoon.

Who is your ‘one to watch’ for you sport in 2020?
Tadgh Daly – he’d a good first season but got cut short with the virus. I think he has great potential.

Who will win the Sam Maguire Cup in 2021?
Mayo!

Three people you’d like to train with?
Katie Taylor, Anthony Joshua and Kelly Harrington.

Three things you can’t live without?
Of course my phone, my bed and the gym.

Your 2020 motto in three words?
Onwards and upwards.

Connell Dempsey
Gaelic Football

Age: 19
Club: Knockmore
Living: East Knockmore
Occupation: Student

What three words would you use to describe your sporting career in 2020?
Not too bad!

What was your sporting highlight of the last 12 months?
Winning the Moclair Cup with a great group of lads.

What was your biggest sporting disappointment of the last 12 months?
Not being able to play our All-Ireland Schools final.

What’s your sporting New Year’s resolution?
Build on last year’s success.

Best sports event you attended/watched in the last 12 months?
Watching Liverpool win the Premier League.

Who will win the Sam Maguire Cup in 2021?
Dublin!

Who is your ‘one to watch’ for you sport in 2020?
Adam Naughton – on the road to recovery.

Three people you’d like to train with?
Brian Fenton, Peter Naughton and Seánie Ruttledge for a gym session.

Three things you can’t live without?
Phone, Netflix and Alan Loftus’ pub talk.

Your 2020 motto in three words?
Drive it on.

Benny Lavelle
Soccer

Age: 31
Club: Ballina Town
Living: Ballina
Occupation: Factory worker

What three words would you use to describe your sporting career in 2020?
Unusual, strange, enjoyable (when we could play).

What was your sporting highlight of the last 12 months?
Probably scoring five goals against Castlebar to win 5-4 in Celtic Park!

What was your biggest sporting disappointment of the last 12 months?
The way the season has gone in general, such an unusual year that we could never have imagined!

What’s your sporting New Year’s resolution?
To help Jamie Cawley get into the same shape as myself!

Best live/virtual sports event you attended/watched in the last 12 months?
I haven’t attended much, but watching Dundalk qualify for the Europa League was an unbelievable achievement!

Who is your ‘one to watch’ for your sport in 2021?
Caleb Daly for us, great young player, and Cian Burke if he sticks around!

Who will win the Sam Maguire cup in 2021?
I cannot see anyone beating the Dubs right now. I should be saying Mayo, but the closest to them next year I would say is Donegal!

Three people you’d like to train with?
Ronaldo, McGregor and Katie Taylor – three unbelievable athletes!

Three things you can’t live without?
Galaxy chocolate, a football and Duane Helly’s sarcasm at training!

Your 2021 motto in three words?
Give it everything!

Barry Walsh
Rugby

Age: 22
Club: Castlebar RFC
Living: Castlebar
Occupation: Student in NUI Galway

What three words would you use to describe your sporting career in 2020?
In terms of the team: ‘enthusiasm, discontent, promising’.

What was your sporting highlight of the last 12 months?
An extra-time win in the Connacht Junior Cup semi-final.

What was your biggest sporting disappointment of the last 12 months?
The Junior Cup final being cancelled back in March.

What’s your sporting New Year’s resolution?
Look after my dodgy hamstrings!

Best live/virtual sports event you attended/watched in the last 12 months?
Argentina vs All Blacks (1st test). Sanchez was insane for Argentina

Who is your ‘one to watch’ for you sport in 2021?
Conor ‘Conza’ King. The lad is Paul O’Connell in disguise.
 
Who will win the Sam Maguire cup in 2021?
One viable answer — Mayo.

Three people you’d like to train with?
On the field, Johnny Sexton and Jonny Wilkinson; Dwayne Johnson in the gym.

Three things you can’t live without?
My phone, good coffee and my glasses — I can’t see a thing without them.

Your 2021 motto in three words?
‘It’s not 2020!’

 

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