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Marcus Kane: Our daughter Mollie couldn't have a birthday party but she loved her drive-by celebrations


Marcus Kane

We are asking our sporting personalities how they are dealing with action coming to a halt because of the coronavirus pandemic and how it has affected their daily lives.

Today, we talk to Glentoran captain Marcus Kane.

Q: How are you keeping?

A: I'm staying at home with Aimee and our six-year-old daughter Mollie and we're all keeping well. Nobody has taken ill, touch wood, but we're very aware of the safety regulations and everything we need to do.

Q: How have you been affected?

A: There's obviously zero team training going on but we've all got individual training sessions which we're being sent every day. We're keeping ourselves in good shape and training every day so hopefully, if and when the league does get up and running again, we'll be ready to go and won't need too long to get that sharpness back.

My other job is with Argento in the online side of things. I've been furloughed but all being well when this is over I'll be back working there again.

Q: How are you keeping fit?

A: Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays are our main days, doing plenty of running and aerobic work-outs. Then on the other days we're doing different things, like Tuesday was a lower body work-out. It's all mixed up, every day is different and it's all designed individually for us. Then we'll post it into the group chat that we've done it.

Mick (McDermott - manager) is also sending us various spreadsheets to look through and wee quotes every day to keep us motivated. Conor Pepper is sending us in extra fitness things we can do as well, so we've plenty to be getting on with.

Q: How are you maintaining morale and how is the Glentoran team bonding?

A: The Glentoran boys have a group chat and the karaoke Van Morrison song we did for social media was good fun. Robbie McDaid put on a Zoom quiz for us last week, too. Andrew Mitchell won but I think he hacked it. It was on Premier League Years and I'm convinced he has been watching them all non-stop over the last few weeks going by some of the questions he was getting right. I'll not tell you who was last... okay, it was me. That's one thing about our squad this year; there's a good bond. We get on really well so win, lose or draw it's a good place to be.

The lads are sending messages, saying how much they miss football and each other. One of them was trying to convince his wife to be the goalkeeper in the back garden so he could have a few shots at her, he's missing it that much.

Q: Where are you drawing your personal strength from now?

A: I've been playing lots of golf out the back and I'm finding it a real getaway. I've been ordering different bits and pieces, like new golf shoes, online so that I'm ready to go when the courses re-open. I've got a wee chipping and putting area set up out the back and I have a net as well for practicing the long game. I've played golf since I was about 12, although with football commitments I just play socially now.

Q: Can you recommend a book, film or box set that stay at home sports fans might enjoy?

A: I don't read at all but I'll say The Magician's Nephew by CS Lewis because it's the only book I've ever read. I read it in school - it was the smallest book so that's why I chose it. It's the first book in the Narnia series but they still haven't made a movie out of it, which I'm pretty gutted about.

For movies, I'm a big Marvel fan. I've watched all of them in order on Disney+ during lockdown, I love them, so any of those.

For a box set, we watched The Stranger recently but I'd say The Office - the UK one, it's the original. I love Ricky Gervais, he's brilliant. His series After Life on Netflix is good as well. It's a bit morbid but there are some very funny bits in it as well in his sort of dark humour.

Q: What life lessons are you learning from this?

A: Just the importance of spending time with family really. Getting to see so much of Mollie is really nice. We've learned how good she is at art. We bought her a desk for her birthday and she loves it.

She turned six at the start of April and obviously couldn't have a party but we organised a wee drive-by with people going past, waving and holding up signs they'd made to say happy birthday to her. She absolutely loved it. She said she wants to have that birthday every year so that's no problem at all - nobody even has to come into the house.

Q: What's the first thing you will do when all this is over?

A: Get back on the golf course again. I honestly can't wait after all the practice I've been doing. I've got a few techniques worked out that I think I can take out onto the course with me. Obviously it would be great to see the league get finished as well and get back to the football again.

Q: And your message to Glens fans?

A: Stay safe, stay at home and hopefully we will all be back at The Oval soon. Anytime I'm out in the car, I find myself taking a wee drive past just to get a wee look at it. I can't wait to be back.

Belfast Telegraph