Saturday 16 November 2019

Pain, loss and disappointment in Kingdom

Majella O'Sullivan

THE unimaginable happened -- and last night Kerry supporters were coming to terms with the pain, loss and disappointment of losing to Dublin by a mere point.

And for the thousands of fans who hadn't secured a ticket to yesterday's All-Ireland -- where better to support their team than anywhere in the Kingdom with a big screen.

The notion of losing had never really been entertained in Kerry in the lead-up the final.

As one woman in Eager's newsagents in High Street, Killarney, put it yesterday before the match: "Sure, the cratureens are up there doing their best for us. But we'll ate them if they don't win."

Noticeable by the grins on their faces -- as well as their blue jerseys -- were the Nulty family from Ballbriggan who had chosen the All-Ireland final weekend for a family break in Killarney.

Yesterday in the Laune bar on New Street, Frances Nulty was celebrating with her husband John, daughters Joan and Maria and their partners.

"We love Killarney but we wanted to come here because of the All-Ireland and wear our Dublin jerseys," said Frances.

"We were getting slagged so much walking around today but we held our heads high. They've treated us very well even since we've won but Dublin people love Kerry and that's why we come here all the time on holidays."

There was no escaping the harsh reality for Killarney man Brendan McCarthy. Brendan had invited his girlfriend Helen de Lacy from Dublin to Killarney for the weekend, just to show her how Kerry celebrates an All-Ireland win, you understand.

"It's the first time they've beaten Kerry in 34 years so it's massive for them," he said.

"We've lost three All-Irelands in the last nine years so we know what it's like to lose but losing to Dublin is very painful especially when it's our own fault and we thought we had it done and dusted."

Still, there was consolation for Kerry fans yesterday -- at least they hadn't lost to Cork. Now that really would be unimaginable.

Irish Independent

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