Wednesday 18 September 2019

Take 20: 'Water polo was the sport I loved the most growing up and I will go back'

Conor Carey

Conor Carey during Connacht Rugby squad training at the Sportsground in Galway. Photo by Sam Barnes/Sportsfile
Conor Carey during Connacht Rugby squad training at the Sportsground in Galway. Photo by Sam Barnes/Sportsfile

1. What boots do you wear and why? I always wear Adidas Kakari boots with 21mm studs so you can get the best grip. It's a must for any prop for all the scrummaging duties we have.

2. You're in charge of the after-match tunes, what goes on first?

Something by the Foo Fighters. Maybe 'Learn to Fly'.

3. Imagine a world where you're not a rugby player - what's your job?

I'd definitely have to chase a career as a food critic. I love my food.

4. Stranded on a desert island, what three things do you take?

I'd be well prepared. I'd take the book, 'A survival guide for idiots', I'd need a good knife and some matches.

5. Which team-mate would you want with you and why?

International Rugby Newsletter

Rugby insights and commentary from our renowned journalists like Neil Francis, Will Slattery, Alan Quinlan & Cian Tracey.

Jonny Murphy. He'd make sure I wouldn't go hungry.

6. What was your favourite book as a child?

I was always fond of the Harry Potter books. Even now I'd say they'd be a good read first time round.

7 What's your pre-training routine?

I have to stretch my back for about 20 minutes before every session and match, mainly because I'm getting stiffer as I get older (27). Before every game I make sure that I've watched as many of the opposition's scrums as possible to be sure I'm well prepped.

8. What's your first sporting memory as a player or spectator?

I remember France winning the 1998 World Cup. They had an amazing team with the likes of Zinedine Zidane and Thierry Henry there.

9. You have one moment from your career to do over. What is it?

I don't think you can look too far back on things, you learn from mistakes and have to move on from them. There's a few good days that I've love to experience again, but I leave the bad ones behind me.

10. What rugby skill would you most like to possess?

I'd love to have some speed, I would love to know what it was like to be fast.

11. Favourite song lyric?

'His palms are sweaty, knees weak, arms are heavy. There's vomit on his sweater already, mom's spaghetti', Eminem.

12. What current player in your position do you most admire?

It's hard to look past Tadhg Furlong in Leinster. What he has achieved in the game as a Lion, as an Ireland international and for his province has been impressive at the age of 26.

13. What former coach has had the biggest effect on your game and why?

Martin Haag and Neil Fowkes at Nottingham. They really helped my scrummaging and showed me some great technical lessons there.

14. What was your first car?

It was a Renault Megane three-door. I realised after about two weeks how annoying it was to let people into the back. No more three-doors for me.

15. What sporting event makes your bucket list?

I would love to go to the Super Bowl someday. If anyone has a spare ticket give me a shout.

16. One minute to go in the Champions Cup final, your team are four points down back on your own line. What do you do?

Get the ball to Niyi (Adeolokun), CK (Cian Kelleher) or Heals (Matt Healy), they score in the corner and then I take the kicking duties and slot it from the touchline. That's how the dream goes anyway...

17. What was the last concert you went to?

I saw Steve Aoki in Chicago during a recent week off. It was straight after a Chicago Bulls game, which was a very enjoyable way to finish the trip.

18. Tell us something interesting about yourself.

Water polo was the sport I loved the most growing up and will go back playing it when I finish rugby.

19. What's your best memory playing rugby for Connacht?

There have been a few great days in the green shirt. Beating Toulouse at home in the Champions Cup was a big achievement. Also beating Ulster away earlier this season meant a lot, because it was where I grew up and the team I wanted to play for when I was a kid. Beating Leinster in Mul's last game last season was up there too.

20. Who'll win the 2019 Guinness PRO14, Champions Cup and Rugby World Cup?

Connacht, Leinster and Ireland hopefully.

Irish Independent

The Left Wing: Ireland's fullback dilemma, World Cup bonding and the squad standby list

Also in Sport