'I was told to prepare for the worst' - Cian O'Sullivan reveals why 2015 final is his most satisfying moment with Dublin
Dublin star Cian O'Sullivan has revealed that his miraculous recovery from injury to play in the 2015 All-Ireland final is his proudest moment in football.
The five-time All-Ireland champion is in a select group of just three players, along with Stephen Cluxton and James McCarthy, who have started all of Dublin's final wins this decade, but that record was put in serious jeopardy ahead of the 2015 decider.
The three-time All-Star seriously injured his hamstring in the All-Ireland semi-final win over Mayo, leaving him with just two weeks to get fit for a final clash with Kerry.
O'Sullivan works as a tax manager with PWC, and speaking on this week's episode of The Left Wing with Luke Fitzgerald and Will Slattery, admitted that it was a big struggle juggling his work commitments with his rehab in what was a 'chaotic' time ahead of the final.
"I have a client list and you can't just one day say, 'ah lads, I'm not going to be in tomorrow'," O'Sullivan says.
"There is going to be stuff that you have the knowledge for that you can't just pass on to someone. For the 2015 final, in the semi-final replay I picked up a bad hamstring injury and I only had two weeks to get ready for the final so I was up against it to play.
"It was one of the busiest times of the year we have in work and I was doing all this rehab and recovery stuff 24/7 but at the same time pulling out the laptop to fire off some emails and get my work done. It was completely chaotic.
"Thankfully I ended up playing some part in the game. I got to the 60th minute."
O'Sullivan then revealed how bad his injury was, and how he overcame significant odds to line out at centre back for Dublin on the day.
"It was a bad tear and I had been told to plan for the worst," O'Sullivan said.
"I got a scan 24 hours after the game [semi-final replay] but there was a lot of inflammation. They re-scanned it four or five days later. The consultant came in with a clipboard and said it wasn't great but he had seen worse. I could see the number of the grade on the top of it and I was thinking 'Oh God' because I knew how bad it was.
"He said we would get it scanned in a few days time because it might be better once it clears up. We got it scanned and it was actually worse. The medical staff sat me down. I was absolutely devastated in the couple of days before but I said I would keep at it and see what happens. Somebody must have been looking down on me."
Despite winning a huge list of honours during his time in blue, O'Sullivan ranks his injury recovery in 2015 as his favourite moment.
"That was the most satisfying thing in my football career," he concluded.
"Being able to sit back in the dressing room and say, 'I can't believe I did that'. That was pretty cool."