I'm completely focused on football, insists Dublin's man for all seasons
BETWEEN a burgeoning radio career and a start-up company, Eamon Fennell has a lot of balls in the air, but none of those commitments will get in the way of his quest to nail down a starting spot in Dublin's midfield.
Fennell isn't your typical inter-county footballer. Most of his Sunday evenings are spent on the airwaves at Phantom FM, on other nights he works as a DJ around the city.
He's currently in the process of launching his 'Trix'n'Trax' company that will sell flat shoes and beauty products in night clubs -- the idea coming after a friend broke her ankle on a night out.
It's a challenging time for new companies and, with his own money invested, he needs all the publicity he can get. But when a TV opportunity clashed with training, there was only going to be one winner.
"TV3 heard about (the company) and asked me would I go on a show and I said yeah at the time. I never knew the demands of filming were so high, so they told me I had to miss training and I just couldn't do it.
"I'm not going to miss training and jeopordise my position for a TV show. Playing for Dublin is something I always want to do, it's hard to get into the team, I've started now and I'm not going to jeopordise that for the sake of being on a TV show. If I miss training, Pat (Gilroy) wouldn't take too kindly to it. It was a no-brainer.
"I've made a few mistakes in the past and I now know when to stop. I won't do anything if it's the week of a game or even if it's the build-up to a massive training game. I just pull everything and concentrate on what I have to do."
Fennell was given the nod to start against Louth and he has been lining out in the 'A' team in the Dubs' in-house matches, suggesting he will hold on to his position when Pat Gilroy names his team to face Wexford tomorrow morning.
But, with Michael Darragh Macauley back in contention after missing the championship opener, and Ross McConnell, Denis Bastick and the recently drafted U-21 star Emmet O Conghaile all vying for game time, Fennell has no shortage of motivation.
"Throughout my inter-county career I've always had the transfer (from O'Tooles to St Vincent's) or different injuries stopping my progress," he said.
"This year, I've had a good run and have remained injury-free so touch wood I can go on and have a good season now, and stay injury-free, because I'd love to hold my place for the rest of the year and really show everyone what I can do."