Kerry's Aidan O'Mahony explains why he's hanging up his inter-county boots and dusted off his dancing shoes

All Ireland winner has called time on his inter-county career

Kerry, Aidan O'Mahony, GAA,

Kerry's Aidan O'Mahony lifts the Sam Maguire ©INPHO/Morgan Treacy

Kerry's Aidan O'Mahony says the first thought of retiring from inter-county football came after the All Ireland semi final defeat to Dublin last year.  

The five time All Ireland and 10 time Munster Championship winner has called time on his Kerry career at the age of 36. 

 Speaking to Off The Ball, the Rathmore club man set out how he had come to his decision.

"The All Ireland semi final this year, that game hit hard," he said.

"It was just hard to lose that game and I got caught with that picture with the tear coming down the eye. It just kind of hit home then and I was kind of saying 'this could be the last time I could be out in Croke Park.' 

"And I remember coming down then that night and thinking about it and I'd be the kind of fella - people would know me - I kind of keep to myself. I thought about it over the winter time then the club finished in the middle of December. Then I played the Railway Cup game I think for the whole 26 minutes I was on the pitch. I went away with my wife for 10 days for a holiday and I thought about it and I came back in January, and I said 'It's time to give youth a fling.'"

O'Mahony has been appearing in the debut series of TV show Dancing With The Stars and it wasn't an opportunity he necessarily jumped at.

"It took a lot of convincing I'd say, coming from a GAA background. It's the last thing you could kind of see yourself in. But it's a challenge and it's something I'm enjoying. It's stressful and something I wouldn't be used to," said O'Mahony.  

"It is a big challenge because you're trying to learn a dance in the space of a week and I don't come from a dancing background and as you can see from the live shows, you have a minute and a half to either make or break yourself. So it's a good thing to do."

He added that he's "delighted" to have taken the chance.