Duggan keen on exam focus as new schedule eats more into study time
Ask Peter Duggan where he will be at any second of any day for the next two weeks and he'll be able to tell you with a fair degree of precision, as he merges preparations for Clare's opening Munster Hurling Championship match with studying for his final exams. His choices won't be varied.
It's a fact of life at this time of year for all students who double as inter-county players and was a common theme for both Duggan and his Limerick counterpart Tom Morrissey when they spoke at yesterday's Littlewood's All-Ireland Championship launch.
The intense schedule of the new provincial hurling championship format clearly didn't have third level students in mind and with Munster bringing their start forward by a week, it brings more students into the exam window.
Morrissey is completing a Masters in taxation at the University of Limerick in the coming weeks - he'll start an internship with Ernst & Young in Limerick in September - but with the Treaty's first game pushed out to the second weekend - Sunday, May 19 - his time pressures are a little more staggered.
"I suppose it's not ideal, but that's life really. The exams go on in May, but you know that. You know that from when you are a kid, May is exam season," he says.
"You just have to get on with it. I think if you want to play this sport and you are going to work, life is all about balance, and it's just about organising yourself."
Duggan has compiled an Excel spreadsheet for the coming weeks to give him clarity for what he needs to do. On the Monday morning after the Waterford game he sits his last and toughest exam of four, accounting.
"I'll have a car waiting outside and I'll go home straight afterwards," he says. "I have a schedule all made out. I know what time I will commit to studying, what time I will commit to cooking food, getting the gym in. I have an Excel sheet at home and I'll know from tomorrow morning on where exactly I will be.
"There will be many other hurlers in the same situation. It's the same for every county player who is a student.
"I'm not fazed by it, I'm just relishing getting out of college. I've done a long stint," he adds, recalling his six years in the Limerick Institute of Technology that saw him study automobile technology before switching to a personally more satisfying business and sport course.
"I know I will be at home studying, and I'll be going into UL to do my exams, and other than that I'll be training. I don't need an Excel sheet to remember that."