Sport Gaelic Football

Friday 22 August 2014

MacLochlainn's warning on training

Daragh O Conchuir

Published 30/01/2013 | 05:00

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Kildare's Andriu MacLochlainn has warned that the GAA is approaching a "tipping point" with regard to the level of training that is now required to be competitive at inter-county level.

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MacLochlainn was forced to withdraw from the Kildare senior football panel this year as he could no longer compromise a personal life that centres around his wife and three children under five years of age.

The Ellistown defender has been a member of the panel for 10 seasons and, at 29, remains in peak condition and hungry for success.

He has not had permanent employment for some time though and may be forced to spend three months on a Canadian oil rig later this year if nothing comes up.

Football had to drop down his list of priorities as the demands of being an inter-county player became too much.

"Football and family life don't mix and there comes a point in your life when you realise there are more important things than football and, in my case, that's my family," said MacLochlainn.

Contrary to some reports, he hasn't retired, as he holds out the hope that a more stable work environment would enable him to return.

He is a huge fan of McGeeney's and praises his role in turning Kildare into a top-eight team.

"At the start of this year, I had a chat with Kieran (McGeeney) – we'd several conversations on the phone – and I couldn't commit to the pre-season training.

"I haven't announced my retirement because it's still in the back of my mind, hoping against hope that I can get back."

With the workload that's involved nowadays, MacLochlainn believes that there will be consequences.

"Joe Brolly was saying he watched Donegal doing savage training and he'd never seen that in his life. But we're doing that. We've been doing it for the last five years and for the first two years it was a shock to the system. It's been upped every year but we have the base now," he said.

"But something is going to happen. There are more cruciate problems, knee problems, groins, pubis... there'll be a tipping point."

Irish Independent

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