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'I found myself after big matches looking through the paper to see was my name on it'

Cork dual star Briege Corkery was speaking on Alan O’Mara’s Real Talks podcast.

Image: Lorraine O'Sullivan/INPHO

CORK DUAL STAR Briege Corkery has opened up on her decision to take a year out from inter-county football and camogie this year, revealing that she started ‘questioning’ herself at times.

Corkery opted out of the Cork panels at the outset of the season, and while the camogie team went on to defeat Kilkenny in the All-Ireland final, the footballers lost their crown the semi-final stage, where they lost out to Mayo.

In a wide-ranging interview with Alan O’Mara on the Real Talks podcast, the 17-time All-Ireland winner said that she gradually lost some of her enjoyment for the game, and was starting to do things that were uncharacteristic for her.

“Last year for me, I didn’t enjoy it. I found myself getting that little bit more bitter,” she said.

I found myself after big matches looking through the paper to see was my name on it and how well did I play, and I just started to question myself all the time.

“When you start questioning yourself, that means you’re not enjoying it as much. For me, that  was it. Maybe bitter is a very strong word, but it was just those little things.

She continued:

“For years, I never looked through papers, never looked at a match report and didn’t look beforehand (at) what people were saying.

“But definitely towards the end I was starting to do that. I just kind of felt like I wasn’t enjoying it, I shouldn’t be looking for my name in the paper or how well I did or were people going to give our about me.

“I’d come away from the paper thinking, ‘that was a bit harsh now.’ For me, that’s not the way I want it to end, looking for headlines or looking to be bitter.”

Briege Corkery Briege Corkery in action during the 2015 Liberty Insurance Senior Camogie Championship Final. Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

Corkery continued playing at club level in 2017, and has also taken up a new job with Bank of Ireland during her year off.

She admitted that she did miss playing for Cork but is uncertain about whether or not she will make a return to fold in the future.

I did enjoy my time off. Did I miss it? I did a small bit but not a whole pile. The thing about me is I know I’m still young enough to go again. The question is, ‘do I want to give that commitment?’

“The whole reason why I don’t want to make any retirement is because I don’t want to have my decision closed for me.

“At the moment, I’m just unsure what I want to do, but at the moment I’m very content with playing club and enjoying that little bit more time off.”

In what is a fascinating discussion with O’Mara, Corkery remarked on other aspects of her personal and sporting career.

She paid tribute to her long-time teammate Rena Buckley who captained the successful camogie team this year and spoke about how former Cork football boss Éamonn Ryan developed a culture of empowerment within the squad.

She also explains how she felt more confident speaking in a sporting environment, and recalls an incident from a team meeting with the camogie squad, when an 18-year-old Corkery voiced her opinion about the introduction of a drinking ban.

Listen to the full interview here:


Source: Real Talks/SoundCloud

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