Sunday with Ardal O’Hanlon: ‘I often don’t get out of my tennis gear’ | Sunday with…

What time are you up? I’m in no rush to get out of bed. I think I wake up around half past eight. I read Guardian and the FT online, start the Everyman crossword and then come up at about 10am.

Favorite Sunday activity? I love tennis… Me and my wife play mixed doubles on weekends which is a great pleasure.

Scary on Sunday? We pick in the morning. When one of our children is home – I have three, they are 24, 22 and 20 years old, so they are not always around – we tend to have dinner on Sundays. My wife would be concerned that they didn’t eat enough vegetables so there will be about 40 different vegetables and a big hunk of roast meat. My wife does most of the cooking. I do things with vegetables.

Sunday afternoon… Tendency to be very lazy. It would be a rare Sunday afternoon that we would go on a field trip or something. We would have done that when the kids were smaller, but not so much now.

Sunday scrubs or Sunday best? Sometimes I can’t get out of my tennis gear, so I flop around in shorts and some sort of sports shirt. By the time you’ve walked the dogs and played tennis, what’s the point?

Growing up on Sunday? We were a conventional religious family. We would have gone to mass at 11 and had an ice cream on the way home. My father would have bought a mountain of newspapers – all the Irish newspapers, all the British newspapers – and we would go through them all systematically. There was little talk.

Sunday night? I suppose as the evening goes on, we do what most families do: watch a little TV, watch a little Netflix, hang a movie. You better call Saul is probably my favorite at the moment.

How do you relax? I wouldn’t say I’m addicted to crosswords, but when I have a spare moment and I’m looking for some kind of escapism, to clear my mind… I think crosswords are good for your brain. I don’t claim any success at the crosswords. But I think the process is good. You can actually feel your brain beating.

Brouhaha by Ardal O’Hanlon is published by HarperCollins for £16.99. Buy a copy for £14.78 at

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