Sunday 16 December 2018

New-look Kerry obliterate Clare to set up Munster final meeting with Cork

Kerry 0-32 Clare 0-10

Paul Geaney of Kerry in action against Cillian Brennan of Clare during the Munster GAA Football Senior Championship semi-final match between Kerry and Clare at Fitzgerald Stadium in Killarney, Kerry. Photo by Matt Browne/Sportsfile
Paul Geaney of Kerry in action against Cillian Brennan of Clare during the Munster GAA Football Senior Championship semi-final match between Kerry and Clare at Fitzgerald Stadium in Killarney, Kerry. Photo by Matt Browne/Sportsfile
Donnchadh Boyle

Donnchadh Boyle

A new look Kerry side made light work of Clare in Killarney as they kept their hopes of a sixth successive Munster title on track in Fitzgerald stadium.

With seven debutants in the starting team, Kerry were something of an unknown quantity going into this game but they delivered a clear

statement of intent when they made a blistering start that helped them into a ten point lead by the 28th minute.

If Clare were to examine this young Kerry team they’d need a fast start and they got just that when Eoin Cleary (free) and Pearse Lillis grabbed the first two points of the game.

However, Kerry quickly took over with Sean O’Shea directing operations.

Their movement and pace was too much for Clare with

Micheal Burns and Stephen O’Brien causing havoc. O’Brien in particular was too much for Clare. With Kerry on top in the middle third, the

much vaunted full forward line of David Clifford, Paul Geaney and O’Donoghue thrived while Sean O’Shea was unerring from placed balls.

When O’Donoghue clipped over his first point on 22 minutes, all six of the Kerry forwards had scored from play. And when Jack Barry galloped through the heart of the Clare defence on 28 minutes to point, he stretched their lead to double figures.

Perhaps more importantly given there failings in the league, Kerry looked solid in defiance too and conceded just two points from play in the opening 35 minutes.

Clare closed the scoring with a Cleary point from a free to end a 20 minute fallow period but things were long gone from them as the Kingdom took a 0-16 to 0-4.

The second half followed in a similar vein as the pace slowed to a challenge game pace with Kerry still well on top in front of the 16,729 in Killarney.

The Kingdom emptied their bench too and introduced the likes of Kieran Donaghy and Darran O’Sullivan and they cruised to an impressive win and set up a Munster final clash with Cork later this month.

 

SCORERS - Kerry: S O’Shea 0-7 (4f, 1 45), P Geaney 0-7 (1f), J O’Donoghue, 0-4 (2f), S O’Brien, BJ Keane 0-3 each, M Burns, D Clifford (1f), 0-2 each, A Maher, J Barry, M Geaney, D O’Sullivan (1f) 0-1 each.

Clare: E Cleary 0-5 (4f), D Tubridy 0-2 (1f), J Malone 0-2, P Lillis 0-1.

Kerry: S Murphy; P Crowley, R Shanahan, T Morley; J Foley, P Murphy, G White; D Moran, J Barry; M Burns, S O’Shea, S O’Brien; D Clifford, P Geaney, J O’Donoghue SUBS: M Geaney for Burns (46), BJ Keane for O’Donoghue (51), B O Beaglaoich for Shanahan, A Maher for Moran (both 57), D O’Sullivan for Clifford (60), K Donaghy for O’Shea (65),

Clare: E Tubridy; C O’Dea, C Brennan, G Kelly; C O nAinifein, J Malone, A Fitzgerald; G Brennan, C O’Connor; K Malone, E Collins, P Lillis; E Cleary, D Tubridy, K Sexton SUBS: G O’Brien for K Malone (45), E Courtney for Tubridy (51), G Cooney for Sexton (57), E

O’Connor for O nAinifein (59), C Finucane for O’Dea (66),

Referee: B Cassidy (Derry).

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