New-look Kerry obliterate Clare to set up Munster final meeting with Cork
Kerry 0-32 Clare 0-10
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).
Who is your sportstar of the year?
Vote in the Irish Independent Sport Star Awards and you could win the ultimate sports prize.
Prizes include, a trip to Old Trafford to watch Man United take on Liverpool in the Premier League, tickets to Ireland's home games in the Six Nations, All Ireland football and hurling final tickets and much more.