Monday, 1 July 2013

Interview #20 - Declan Grogan

Hey Deco, how are things?
Not too shabby Hogi. Just check my results there and have discovered im now an eligible bachelor of science. :) 

Unreal stuff, congrats! And congrats on making the team, how did it feel way back in October when you heard you'd earned a spot for Worlds?
Thank you, it felt pretty amazing to get the call up to the team. :)

You started playing the game in DCU and quickly established yourself as a solid handler for the college and Irish Juniors team. Who were you coaches back then? And of those around you at the time, who were the most enjoyable to play with?
I did indeedy. Back then I had da boyZ (Ross, Brian and Louis for those who don't know them) and Dom coaching me in DCU, which helped me loads. I had Seamas Murray and Shimbo coaching me in Juniors. Those lads were great to have around. Especially Shimbo for the sessions we used to have in Fibbers then training in Herbert park. ;) The lads have been a blast to play with over the years.

At WJUC in 2010, the Irish team did well enough, having some close fought losses and those two enjoyable wins at the end of the week. What were the highlights for you, both personal and team highlights?
The bits that stand out were 2 wins obviously, and also Keith and Tuffy stealing all of my assists. The bastards. :P Getting some real assists was great too. The fun and atmosphere was amazing, and I cant wait to experience that again with the team. 

In what game(s) did you learn the most about your game and about ultimate?
I couldn't tell you that. I don't remember too many game specifics from juniors. Sorry.

Ha, that's quite all right. Since playing juniors you've been a bit unlucky with injuries. Tell us about the injuries and the long road to recovery.
I only really got unlucky with the one injury, but it kept me out for the year and a half. I was misdiagnosed for about four months too which was really frustrating.  Luckily Louise Pollard saw what it was and got me in to the DCU physio clinic to see a guy from Cappagh hospital. He knew straight away what was wrong and got me an MRI really quickly and surgery was scheduled for six months after the MRI results came in. Recovery was grand post surgery, the usual nonsense bla bla bla. 

But your back now and smashing it! How did it feel when you first got back on the pitch after so long off?
It felt great, it was such a relief, but learning how to play ultimate again was a bit tough, I had spent so much tome watching ultimate that I felt like i studied ultimate instead of playing it. But getting playing and laying out straight away made me get back into the sport so much quicker! 

You missed out on Mixed Tour in Cardiff but made it to Windmill Windup for the team's last warm up tournament. Were you happy with the weekend?
I loved it! I had never been before and being there with the Irish squad made it so brilliant. I had a few disappointments but also some good highlights personally. But I think the whole team had that kind of experience.

The team's morale at the tournament was praised by a lot of spectators and commentators, will this be a big factor for the team's successes in Toronto?
Definitely, it's great knowing everyone is on your side and fully in support of you when you go out on the field. It will definitely be a help when we're in tough and tight games.

What are you most looking forward to at Worlds, both on and off the pitch?
I guess I'm looking towards a spirited and calm championships, with no crazy hullabaloos going on.

What team do you want to play against the most?
Team USA/Canada/Columbia. GB is too stereotypical and everyone else chose that team. :P 

Let's wrap this up with a joke!
What's the king of the classroom?
The ruler!

Cheers for taking the time to chat bud, good luck at Worlds!
You too buddy! It's gonna be class.

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