Byrnes offers unique insight into ups and downs after sporting life

Galway native and RTE Sports Editor Paul Byrnes who has just launched 'At The End Of The Day', a look at how different individuals cope with life after sport
Galway native and RTE Sports Editor Paul Byrnes who has just launched 'At The End Of The Day', a look at how different individuals cope with life after sport

Talking Sport with Stephen Glennon

A cracking new book, penned by a Galway man, which investigates and recounts how various players, athletes and sportspeople cope with retirement after their illustrious sporting careers have finished up has just hit the bookshelves.

A bestseller in the making, ‘At The End Of The Day’ has been written by Oranmore native and RTE sports editor and producer, Paul Byrnes, and features high profile celebrities from a myriad of sports, including GAA, rugby, soccer and athletics, to mention but a few.

It may be just over a year since Talking Sport sat down with Byrnes – who was then, as RTE’s GAA Executive Editor, flat out working on preparations for The Sunday’s Game All-Ireland hurling final programme – but the arrival of this intriguing new book warranted another chin-wag with the affable journalist.

He explains that since then, he has taken an eight-month career break from the national broadcaster, for the purpose of writing this book. “It was something I had been thinking about for quite a while. I just wanted to do something different and the book was on my mind,” he begins.

“To be honest, I don’t know how people actually write a book when they are working and they have a family and everything. It takes up a lot of time. So, I just wanted a bit of space. If I was doing The Sunday Game, it would just be impossible to write a book as well.”

It was eight months well spent and the publication of ‘At The End Of The Day’, in which 14 sportspeople speak openly and candidly about the highs and lows of their sporting careers and the affect their retirement had them, is a monument to this.

“I always wondered what it must it be like when you are finished up (as a professional athlete or playing inter-county) and what must it be like when it is all over. When you are no longer playing. Life after sport. How difficult must that be. So, that was the idea around the book.

“After that, it was just identifying athletes who had great stories, interesting stories that I might have read bits of and pieces about them over the years and said that is really interesting. He or she would be an interesting interview for the book.”

For more, read this week’s Galway City Tribune.