When we last sat down with the record-capped Irish fullback he had just ended a high-profile relationship with an English actress and revealed how his DMs constantly lit up from women trying to date him.
That punditry has helped to dispel the myth that the 36-year-old Cooley man is boring (there’s a parody @boringkearney Twitter page) and he has started to gently tiptoe into the world of social media.
His wife Jess is the complete opposite when it comes to social media, using her Instagram page to inform her 80,000 followers about most aspects of her life; recently venturing into a lot of interiors while the loved-up couple renovate their home.
So is the Louth hunk interested in the latest interiors trends? “Ha, I suppose I am into it a bit, but Jess is really into it,” the former Ireland and Leinster man exclusively tells the Sunday World.
“But to be clear, you won’t find me lamp shopping in Home Store and More on a Sunday morning, but I am into having a good-looking house.”
When we last sat down with the record-capped Irish fullback he had just ended a high-profile relationship with an English actress and revealed how his DMs constantly lit up from women trying to date him. So how is it now?
“Ah Jesus no,” he laughed. “I am a 36-year-old married man with grey hair so I don’t get women sliding into my DMs these days. I used to alright, but not nowadays.”
Like a lot of ex professional sports stars Kearney found leaving a core group of friends really hard. “I sneakily just left the WhatsApp group the morning after we were all out together. Not big announcement or speeches. I just left the group. It sounds stupid but it was a big deal. This is a family of mates who have been part of the same team for years. The daily banter on WhatsApp was now gone and it hit me harder than expected.
“I’m not going to lie though. Watching the scenes on the pitch after Ireland won the tour in New Zealand was the first time I sat there really wishing I was still in the game. A lot of me was missing it, not just the usual small bit of me.
“It’s been three years now. I don’t think I’ll ever fully get over missing it.”
Kearney is the face of the Longines Champions’ Weekend which takes place on September 10 in Leopardstown and 11 in The Curragh.
The two-time-Grand Slam winner owns a horse and has fallen in love with the sport. “Buying a horse is not a ‘get-rich quick’ scheme,” he is quick to point out.
“I own half a horse and love the craic and atmosphere and build up, but I won’t be retiring on it.”
“I grew up on a farm with horses but only ever took a passing interest until the last few years when I bought in. I love being in and around the parade ring and the winner’s enclosure. I love the day out and that’s why I can’t wait for next weekend.
“My horse won a race over fences but as soon as we got him out on the flat we realised he was behind the pace. But we have down at Jessica Harrington’s yard, so he is in good hands.”
The ninth Longines Irish Champions Weekend takes place at Leopardstown on Saturday September 10 and The Curragh on Sunday September 11. Tickets are available in advance from just €25. For more information and to get your tickets go to irishchampionsweekend.ie