Cormac Costello is one of the pre-eminent Gaelic football forwards of his generation with seven All Ireland medals and a host of other titles.
he’s also an avid golfer and while he’s not quite ready to hang up his boots and chase the single digit handicap, the Whitehall Colmcille star loves nothing more than a round at Clontarf Golf Club, where his father, John Costello , Dublin County Board Chairman, is a long-time member.
He got into football while on a family holiday in Kerry and with UK ties it’s no surprise that a Kerry footballer is among the players he admires most.
Even his current favorite golfer is from Listowel.
1. How is your golf? Back and forth. I haven’t played for a while. I play for madness and a bit of fun instead of taking it too seriously.
2. How did you start playing the game? My father. He’s a member of Clontarf and whenever we went to Kerry for the holidays me and my father, my little brother and my uncle would go out and play in Killarney. There are some nice courses down there so I started.
3. Choose your weapon. Driver or Putter? And why? Driver. I just love letting it rip. I do it with pleasure.
4. Links or Parkland? Why? parkland. If you miss a lot on a parkland course you could end up on a different fairway, whereas in links golf it’s very unforgiving. Definitely parkland.
5. When were you happiest on the golf course? Probably a few years ago on a team holiday in Thailand. We played there in 2015 and the course was just amazing. It was in Phuket and the weather was spectacular. Unfortunately, I was the one who paid at the end of that round. I played with Rory O’Carroll, Jason Sherlock and Davy Byrne. I think Rory won that day. As for the best golfer on the roster, I would probably pick Lee Gannon.
6. Who is your sporting hero? Kate Taylor. It’s electric, isn’t it? she is brilliant She’s just the complete role model. The way she goes about her business calmly and every time she goes out she executes. She’s just a heroine.
7. Name an opponent or rival you particularly admire and why. When I was younger it was Mike Frank Russell who played for Kerry. He was a very agile corner striker, he was very good in front of goal and broke my heart a couple of times as a Dublin fan. He was a sniper. He definitely was one.
8. What are your golfing ambitions? Do you have one? I want to get my handicap in the single digits. But not yet. I still have a lot of football to play, so maybe later. I don’t want to start too early.
9. Name your dream fourball (you don’t have to be a golfer). And name the venue. Tyson Fury, the world heavyweight champion. I’m a little boxing fan. Then I would go to Chance the Rapper. He’s one of my favorite artists. I love “All Night”. And then Leonardo DiCaprio. I just love all his films. Me and Tyson would compete against the two boys and we would play at Elm Park. (laughs).
10. If you could change one thing about golf or GAA what would it be? Gaelic football is fine but they could give me a few more mulligans in golf.
11. If I gave you a mulligan in your football career, what would it be? Probably the All Ireland semifinals against Mayo last year. We were beaten, so I’d like to attack them again.
12. If you only had one more round to play, where would you play? Don’t say Augusta National unless you absolutely have to. It just has to be Augusta. We’re sorry. Every year when the Masters comes around, it just looks so fresh. It just makes you want to run out and hit a golf ball. I probably wouldn’t shoot the lowest score, but I would love the chance to see what I can shoot.
13. What is your favorite par 3? It definitely has to be the 12th run at Druids Glen with the Celtic Cross teeing off. I remember there being a Dublin GAA Golf Classic there and I helped out by handing out water and chocolate bars to the boys from a golf buggy. We had to play the closest to the pin on the 12th and I hit the green. This is probably the highlight of my golf career so far.
14. If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be? It doesn’t have to be about golf. I wish I was a little younger. The legs start walking (laughs). The body now starts to ache a bit after training. I am 27.
15. What is your most prized possession (golf or otherwise)? God forbid there was a fire. What would you grab first? I would probably catch the dog. I have a beautiful dog named Puma. She is an American Bully. I like dogs and she is great. She’s only gone once, but she’s brilliant.
16. If you could change one thing about your Golf, what would it be? My putting. As you could see there, I missed a few five feet. What do you say? They drive for the show and putt for the dough.
17. Who is your favorite golfer of all time? Why? My current favorite golfer is Corey Conners, the Canadian golfer. I just like the way he plays. It’s just solid and very rarely has a bad hole. Obviously Tiger would be the all time favorite and Shane Lowry is simply a hero. He is seriously playing golf at the moment.
18. You probably didn’t know that Corey Conners is from Listowel… Canada. Finally, what is your idea of perfect happiness? Wow. That is a difficult question. Waking up somewhere on the beach. I love a nice, hot and sunny climate.
Don’t miss your Tee to Green supplement in Friday’s Irish Independent.
https://www.independent.ie/sport/golf/tee-to-green/quick-18-with-cormac-costello-we-got-beaten-by-mayo-and-id-love-another-crack-at-them-41640370.html Quick 18 with Cormac Costello: “We were beaten by Mayo and I would like to crack them again”