THE Kingdom finally came to life in this year's Allianz FL Division 1 when they outclassed Tyrone in yesterday's duel in Fitzgerald Stadium, Killarney.
Tyrone brought out the best in Kerry in last year's league and likewise yesterday as James O'Donoghue inspired Eamon Fitzmaurice's men to their 3-15 to 0-9 rout – the first victory after three defeats.
The Gooch may be out for the season (cruciate) but O'Donoghue highlighted that he is a class act with out without the promptings of the brilliant Colm Cooper.
The sides were level, 0-8 each at the break, but O'Donoghue scored a 38th-minute goal to prise the game open, and sealed the win with two superb strikes in the final 10 minutes.
It was a busy afternoon's work for Tyrone 'keeper, Niall Morgan, who came to the rescue twice in the opening five minutes with excellent saves.
First he denied Peter Crowley after he had been sent clear by O'Donoghue's quickly taken free kick.
And when O'Donoghue used his pace to cut in from the left and get his shot away, Morgan again keep his line intact.
However, the early omens suggested that Kerry were finding their feet after some disappointing early results in this year's campaign.
The crucial first goal arrived three minutes after the break when substitute Kieran O'Leary's high delivery was broken by Paul Geaney into the path of O'Donoghue, who sprinted clear before firing clinically past Morgan.
Geaney and Bryan Sheehan added points and all of a sudden the balance of power was totally in Kerry's favour when leading by six points entering the concluding 15 minutes.
There was to be no late heroics by Tyrone this week ala their pickpocketing of Kildare the previous week as O'Donoghue's goal nine minutes from time put Kerry out of touch.
The Kingdom travel to Newbridge to face Kildare next Sunday in their next clash while Tyrone host Westmeath in Healy Park, Omagh.
SCORERS – Kerry: J O'Donoghue 3-3 (0-2f); B Sheehan 0-8 (0-7f); A Maher, BJ Keane, K O'Leary, P Geaney 0-1 each. Tyrone: P Harte, D McCurry, N Morgan (0-2f), R O'Neill (0-2f) 0-2 each; C McGinley 0-1.
KERRY: B Kelly; P Murphy, M Griffin, S Enright; P Crowley, F Ftizgerald, M O Sé; A Maher, D Moran; D Casey, B Sheehan, D Walsh; BJ Keane; S O'Brien, J O'Donoghue. Subs: P Kilkenny for Enright, K O'Leary for Walsh, P Geaney for Keane, D O'Sullivan for Casey, A O'Mahony for Crowley, J Buckley for Sheehan.
TYRONE: N Morgan; PJ Quinn, C Clarke, B Tierney; R McNamee, P Harte, R McNabb; C Cavanagh, S Cavanagh; E McKenna, R O'Neill, S McGuigan, D McCurry, Mattie Donnelly, P McNeice. Subs: C McGinley for McNabb, Mark Donnelly for McNeice, N McKenna for McGuigan, C Grugan for E McKenna, A McCrory for Quinn.
REF: R Hickey (Clare).