Classy Cian Cian O'Sullivan beats injury doubts withe sterling performance
THERE'S All-Ireland final preparations from hell and then there's what Cian O'Sullivan went through to be part of yesterday.
"I was just trying to do everything in my power to get it right for the game," he explained afterwards.
"I went to some lengths to do that and thankfully it all paid off.
"I did a fitness test on Friday evening, got through that and I was able to play 60 minutes. I can't ask for more than that."
"It was a hamstring tear," he explained, having put together a typically classy performance, even if his movement was clearly hampered somewhat before the trigger in his hamstring pulled.
"So it was up in the air. I did a bit of running on Wednesday and I got through that.
"On Friday I had to take it up a notch and really test it out to see would I be match-ready. I got through that, so blessed.
"I have to say a special thanks to our medical team, especially Ciaran O'Reilly our physio, who bent over backwards and left no stone unturned.
"I'd have to say a big thank you to my employers, PWC, too.
"I more or less took the two weeks during a very busy time in the office and worked from home to allow me to get all the treatment.
"I was getting physio twice a day, icing it 24-7 and all those little interventions made the difference."
As with these sorts of things, rumours circulated about the medical miracles being embraced by O'Sullivan in his efforts to be fit. "No, I didn't have an ice back in the house," he laughed afterwards.
"I had this machine called a Game Ready. It wraps around your leg and it's a fancy ice-pack basically. Every part of it was worth it to get to tog out with the guys and play a part in winning an All-Ireland.
"People come up to you and the first thing they say to you is 'how's the leg?'.
"They mean no malice, they're just trying to be nice, but in reality it's the last thing you want to hear and it's a bit of a mind melt.
"The last two weeks in the run-up to this game, distractions was one of the big things we talked about and being able to avoid them.
"We had a few little techniques there to help understand that the people who say these things and what's said in the newspapers, they're in a different place to this squad and where our vision is.
"I think we coped with it well and I coped with it well, even though it was tough at time."