Dessie is an elite athlete who has represented Monaghan at all levels, won a multitude of awards and is an entrepreneur. His business, Breakthrough Performance specialises in taking athletes to the next level and helping them make the 'Breakthrough!'
10 Minutes with Dessie
Q. WHAT PIECE OF ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TO YOUR 18-YEAR-OLD SELF?
Enjoy playing and always try to express yourself on the field.
Q. IF I SAID TO YOU, ALL GAELIC GAMES IS BUILT ON ONE THING- YOUR STATUS IN THE COMMUNITY, AND THAT IF YOU TOOK A STEP BACK YOU WOULD REALISE THAT IT MEANS NOTHING IN THE GRAND SCHEME OF THINGS. WHAT WOULD YOU SAY TO THAT?
I would say there is a lot more to life than Gaelic games, when you are heavily involved it can consume you but at the end of the day it is a hobby and it should be played to be enjoyed not for status.
Q. A LOT OF SUCCESSFUL / HIGH PERFORMING PEOPLE IN LIFE HAVE SOME SORT OF PREVIOUS TRAUMA, OR OBSTACLE THAT THEY'VE HAD TO DEAL WITH. DO YOU HAVE ONE, AND IF YES, HOW HAVE YOU DEALT WITH IT, AND HAS IT HELPED OR HINDERED YOU?
I had hip surgery in 2015 which prevented me from staying part of the Monaghan panel which won an Ulster title. I struggled to get back playing/training after that injury for a long time but I think it taught me how to look after my body better.
Q. DO YOU HAVE A FAVOURITE FAILURE? HOW HAS THIS SET YOU UP FOR LATER SUCCESS?
I wouldn’t call it a favourite but I think losing the Ulster minor final 2012 helped me to improve and win it in 2013.
Q. WHAT’S ON YOUR GAA BUCKET LIST?
Ideal world; win an Ulster title with Monaghan and Senior Championship with Ballybay, anything after that would be a bonus.
Q. WHAT’S ON YOUR BUCKET LIST OUTSIDE OF THE GAA?
I would like to expand my business, open a second and third gym and set up another business.
Q. WHAT SPORTS DO YOU LIKE WATCHING OUTSIDE OF GAA? WHY? DO YOU LOOK UP TO THEIR STAR ATHLETES?
I like watching most sports but especially Golf, Basketball, Aussie Rules and Soccer. I do look at their star athletes and sometimes compare their lifestyles and how they train to mine. If I feel I can implement some of the things they do to benefit my performance, I will.
Q. WHAT IS THE ONE DRILL/PART OF TRAINING THAT YOU ALWAYS DREAD? WHY?
I dread pre-season running in the depths of winter but always get that feel good factor from completing them.
Q. WHAT IS THE ONE DRILL/PART OF TRAINING THAT YOU ALWAYS LOOK FORWARD TO? WHY?
Attacking play and trying to break down defense. I enjoy the challenge of breaking down a defense and practicing my shooting under pressure. Anything that is game realistic and involves attacking I enjoy.
Q. WHO DO YOU THINK IS THE BEST PLAYER IN THE COUNTRY IN YOUR POSITION RIGHT NOW? WHAT DO THEY DO THAT MAKES THEM THE BEST?
I’d say Cillian Mc Daid was the best player in my position this year and his confidence to shoot and reset after missing is what I think made him the best.
Q. HOW WAS THE CLUB FOUNDED? WHO FOUNDED IT? AND WHEN?
Ballybay Pearse Brothers was founded in 1906 and named after Patrick and William Pearse.
Q. WHO IS YOUR NEAREST RIVAL?
In recent years probably Scotstown.
Q. WHAT IS YOUR FIRST MEMORY OF THIS RIVALRY? HOW DID YOU FIND OUT ABOUT THE RIVALRY? WAS IT FROM A FAMILY MEMBER? A COACH?
Championship 2015 was my first memory and it was probably the start of it for me. It was a rivalry born from both teams meeting in the semi-final and finals of championship on a number of occasions but by all accounts it goes right back to when my grandfather played for Ballybay.
Q. DO YOU ENJOY PLAYING THEM? OR IS THE FEAR OF LOSING MORE OF A HINDRANCE THAN A BENEFIT?
I enjoy the challenge of playing them, they are the best in Monaghan and we are doing our best to get to that level.
Q. WHO WAS YOUR ROLE MODEL IN THE CLUB DURING YOUR CHILDHOOD? WHAT SET THEM APART? WHAT WAS THEIR KEY ATTRIBUTE?
Paul Finlay. His skill level, ability to field high ball and his left foot is probably what set him apart but his key attribute to our club is his leadership.
Q. WHAT IS THE WEIRDEST THING ABOUT YOUR CLUBGROUNDS/CLUB?
My business Breakthrough Performance is run from our club grounds.
Q. WHO IS THE CLUBS MOST LEGENDARY MANAGER? WHAT HAVE THEY ACHIEVED WITH THE CLUB?
John Joe Gorman and Fintan Burns are probably the most legendary in my mind as they brought us to a county championship in 2012. I was 17 joining the panel that year and they were very supportive.
Q. HAS YOUR FAMILY ALWAYS BEEN INVOLVED IN THE CLUB?
Yes my grandad has won 5 county championships along with his two brothers and my dad has won one county championship along with his brother so the club has been a huge part of our family.
Q. WHAT IS YOUR BEST MEMORY PLAYING WITH THE CLUB?
Winning the championship final 2012.
Q. WHAT IS YOUR WORST MEMORY PLAYING WITH THE CLUB?
Losing the club championship final 2018.