Friday 6 December 2019

Kingdom keep status quo with club champs to represent Kerry again if needed

The rule changed last winter with the club champions rewarded with provincial representation rather than the club which went furthest in the county championship (stock photo)
The rule changed last winter with the club champions rewarded with provincial representation rather than the club which went furthest in the county championship (stock photo)
Michael Verney

Michael Verney

The bizarre scenario which saw Austin Stacks represent Kerry in this year's Munster club SFC despite an early championship exit could be repeated next year after a motion from Dr Crokes to adopt a change was withdrawn.

When a divisional side prevails in the Kerry SFC - as happened this year with East Kerry defeating Dr Crokes in the final - the club champions, which are crowned in April, progress to represent the Kingdom in provincial action.

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That happened with Austin Stacks - who defeated Dr Crokes in April's club final - going down heavily to Cork champions Nemo Rangers, having gone weeks without competitive action.

The rule changed last winter with the club champions rewarded with provincial representation rather than the club which went furthest in the county championship.

Dr Crokes sought to amend that ruling at this week's Kerry county board meeting and reward any club that made it to the final against a divisional side with Munster duties, but their motion fell on deaf ears.

Crokes also proposed that should two divisional sides contest the Kerry SFC final, the honour of representing Kerry would fall back to the winners of April's club championship, but that found little favour with delegates.

Meaningless

Representatives from Austin Stacks shot down the motion saying that the club championship would be deemed meaningless if the proposal was passed, so the status quo remains for 2020.

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Meanwhile, Cavan defender Killian Clarke has denied that a rift with management was the reason for him opting out of the Breffni panel for 2020.

"I've been involved nine years at this stage," the former International Rules player said.

"It's a decision I didn't come to lightly. I want to take a bit of time to myself and evaluate what my life is going to be.

"I heard there were rumours that I had a falling out with management but that's not the case at all.

"I just fell out of love with the game a wee bit to be honest. I wasn't enjoying it."

Clarke, who joins attacker Dara McVeety in leaving the Breffni fold for next season, was a vital cog in their run to this year's Ulster final and his absence will be sorely felt.

Elsewhere, Donegal boss Declan Bonner is expected to be without midfielder Jason McGee for up to six months - he will miss the entirety of their Division 1 league campaign - as he faces a lengthy recovery from hip surgery.

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