Daniel Kearney has detailed his reasons for withdrawing from the Cork senior hurling panel this year, saying it isn’t feasible to combine a new job with the commitment required for inter-county hurling.
“ I’m moving jobs in the next month or so to a more senior position that’s going to take up more of my time.
“Going back over the eight years I’ve had playing for Cork I was always able to manage both, work and playing, though that needed a lot of sacrifices outside of those.
“But this new role will take up a lot more time and I’m also cognisant of putting more time into other stuff in my life like relationships as well.
“Can work and playing for Cork coexist? I don’t think they can if I try to do my best for both. That’s a big part of my decision.”
Kearney wished returning manager Kieran Kingston and the players the best for the year ahead: “The hard thing about pulling back is you’re cutting out a big part of your life, one which was part of your life for years, togging out five nights a week with the lads.
“I was also lucky enough to work under great management teams, and then seeing another good management team coming in this year — Kieran (Kingston), Ger (Cunningham), Diarmuid O’Sullivan, and Christy O’Connor and Declan O’Sullivan and the rest of the lads.
“When you see that calibre of backroom team coming together it makes the decision to pull back that bit harder, but those are the decisions you have to make. Obviously I’ll be wishing the management team and players the very best going forward this season.”
The midfielder will continue to captain his club Sarsfields this season.
“Wanting to go back and play for my club, and to do so when I can bring proper energy to it — the longer you play at inter-county level the less time you have to give back to your club.
“I’ve learned a lot of good behaviours, a lot about high standards, that I want to bring back to my club to share and teach the club players and to help improve them.
“Being captain brings another little bit of pressure because obviously you want to set a good example. So that’s where the decision to step back comes from.”
Kearney said inter-county preparation was more and more time-consuming but added that he could “only say good things” about his experiences with Cork.
“As the game gets more professional, the expectations at training, the volume of training, all of those are going up and up.
“You’re trying to prepare to perform to the best of your ability, so the element of fun gets marginalised that bit more.
“In 2012, when I started, for instance, there wasn’t as much focus on recovery, but with training levels rising that (recovery) became more important — the harder you train the harder you have to recover. So that time element ramps up and up all the time.
“If you’re working that hard and results aren’t going your way that can be difficult to get through, but when you get good performances there’s no better place to be. It’s a very positive environment and I can only say good things about my time with Cork.
“I have memories that can never be replicated, they’re not things you can go into a shop and pick off the shelf.
“I have relationships, — inside and outside Cork, which I’ll have for the rest of my life, and I’m very grateful for that.
“I’m just at a point where I have to make a decision going forward, but I don’t have any regrets or negative thoughts looking back.
“It’s all positive.”