Donal Óg Cusack has given a unique insight to Davy Fitzgerald's competitive edge and will to win in the latest episode of the RTÉ GAA Podcast.
Cusack and Fitzgerald were rivals on the field for much of their playing careers and then they formed an unlikely combination on the sideline with Clare.
The pair worked together with the Banner County when Fitzgerald was manager and Cusack a selector, a partnership that few would have foreseen forming.
Fitzgerald is now managing Wexford, who take on Kilkenny in Sunday’s Leinster final at Croke Park, and the former Cork keeper knows the lengths his friend will go to in order to win.
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"I remember going to a Christmas party with him and my partner Nathan was with me and I said to him 'this might not be your normal Christmas night out’, I had a feeling there was going to be a lot of competition involved," explained Cusack. "This isn’t just a couple of drinks we’re going for!
"The whole event, and I say this with the greatest respect, admiration and love for the man, was actually a competition. There was pool, table tennis... Did he win it? What do you think!
"I remember watching him in one of the table tennis games and I can’t remember who he was teamed up with him, but he ended up standing beside the door while Davy took over the whole side of that table tennis table!"
Fitzgerald, an All-Ireland winner as a player and manager with his native Clare, is a hurling obsessive – another thing that Cusack got to see up close.
He recalls when the pair met up first to discuss working together with the Banner.
"He was going through things, going through the backroom team and I was intrigued with the backroom team because of the scale of it," said Cusack.
"I was asking him about it and he had it all mapped out in his book and he had an organisational chart where everyone was accounted for. I couldn't have been more impressed and was delighted to get involved.
"Everything I saw after that was a man who was committed and he’s committed to the game of hurling; he’s committed to advancing it and he’s never shied away from challenges or approaching the game with different structures.
"The man is great for the GAA, if you ask me."
Cusack is backing Fitzgerald to guide Wexford to a Leinster final victory over Kilkenny on Sunday, which would complete a clean-sweep for Davy as a manager – winning Leinster, Munster, league and All-Ireland titles.