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Tomás Ó Sé meets Simon Zebo: His Ireland exile, life in Paris and being called the 'N' word

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Simon Zebo with his partner Elvira and his children Jacob, Noah and Sofia in Paris

Simon Zebo with his partner Elvira and his children Jacob, Noah and Sofia in Paris

Simon Zebo with his partner Elvira and his children Jacob, Noah and Sofia in Paris

A couple of years back, I was in a restaurant in Cork when I noticed Simon Zebo down the back with a few friends.

I assumed immediately that they were just rugby mates of his, but it turned out they were old GAA team-mates from his time playing Gaelic football for St Michael's. Zebo has always fascinated me on a number of levels.

Firstly, for his demeanour in the heat of battle, that almost smiling indifference to the stresses and pressures of elite sport. As someone who was the polar opposite on my biggest days with Kerry, I'm forever intrigued by those who - like Zebo - seem to take massive occasions in their stride.