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Kerry’s Sean O’Shea in action against Tipperary’s Kevin Fahey. Ken Sutton/INPHO

Kerry kick off Munster and All-Ireland defence with 20-point thumping of Tipperary

The Kingdom progress to the provincial final.

Kerry 0-25

Tipperary 0-5

Stephen Barry reports from Fitzgerald Stadium

KERRY SHOOK OFF a little rust but were never extended beyond second gear in a 20-point thumping of Tipperary that sends them into the Munster final.

It was the type of mismatch where Tony Brosnan could bounce the ball between his legs basketball-style without fear of losing possession but otherwise offered poor entertainment for the 6,939 fans in attendance at Fitzgerald Stadium.

The only goal chance was a first-half penalty taken by Brosnan but Michael O’Reilly got down to his left to make a fine save.

Tipperary had conceded in advance they wouldn’t be winning this game. Kerry would be too respectful to admit it but they could never imagine losing it either. Thus, it came down to whatever lessons could be gleaned from a game played at training-ground pace.

There was no hint of experimentation about Jack O’Connor’s selection. He settled on three changes from the All-Ireland final; one enforced by David Moran’s retirement, the other two for Brian Ó Beaglaioch and Stephen O’Brien, who made their seasonal returns from injury in the second half. In came Paul Murphy, Dara Moynihan, and Brosnan in their stead.

As Tipp looked to slow down proceedings at every opportunity, the game went eight minutes without its first shot (a Jack Kennedy wide) and 10 before its first score from Paudie Clifford. As the Fossa forward kicked that point, Kerry ‘keeper Shane Ryan was the only player outside the Tipp 65.

Kevin Fahey had produced three early turnovers, one with Dara Moynihan bearing down on goal, and he nailed an equaliser despite slipping as he shot.

Kerry slowly warmed to their task and wore Tipperary down. They kicked four in-a-row before Colm O’Shaughnessy’s 45-metre punt drifted over and another six from there to the half.

Three times Tom O’Sullivan picked Tipp open for marks out in the left corner. Two were converted by his Dingle clubmate Paul Geaney and the other by Seán O’Shea.

tom-osullivan-shoots-at-goal Tom O'Sullivan. Ken Sutton / INPHO Ken Sutton / INPHO / INPHO

O’Sullivan added the pick of the bunch, an outside-of-the-boot effort, which he would repeat again in the second half. Diarmuid O’Connor and Moynihan also combined to create and convert a point apiece.

It was O’Sullivan, again, who was twice involved in the move that earned Kerry a 30th-minute penalty. David Clifford was on the end of it, his attempt foot-blocked by Colman Kennedy but Brosnan couldn’t add the finish.

Still, by the break, all six Kerry forwards had registered while none of the Tipp attackers had troubled the scoreboard, which read 0-12 to 0-2.

Their main attacking innovation featured O’Reilly coming up to take any frees won around the 65 and land them in around the Kerry goal. Bar one wide from debutant Cathal Deely, the hosts were able to repel the aerial bombardment.

Stephen Quirke did shake some change from that approach in the second half, winning a mark in midfield and an attacking mark moments later for a point.

But other than that and a couple of Jack Kennedy placed balls, it was a matter of how much Kerry would run up the scoreboard.

Brosnan was the most eager to impress, recovering well from his penalty miss to take his tally to 0-5 despite picking up a knock.

O’Sullivan racked up his third as he made a strong case for man of the match. O’Shea finished on 0-7 while Shane O’Connell held David Clifford (0-2 frees) scoreless from play.

david-clifford Clifford was held scoreless from play. Ken Sutton / INPHO Ken Sutton / INPHO / INPHO

Kerry reeled off the final eight points as they took their spread of scorers to 11 different players.

It finished with a late black card for Brian Ó Beaglaioch and a point for Ruairí Murphy to mark his Championship debut.

Scorers for Kerry: Seán O’Shea 0-7 (4f, 1m), Tony Brosnan 0-5, Tom O’Sullivan 0-3, David Clifford 0-2 (2f), Paul Geaney 0-2 (2m), Jason Foley 0-1, Diarmuid O’Connor 0-1, Dara Moynihan 0-1, Paudie Clifford 0-1, Ruairí Murphy 0-1, Killian Spillane 0-1.

Scorers for Tipperary: Jack Kennedy 0-2 (1f, 1 45) Kevin Fahey 0-1, Colm O’Shaughnessy 0-1, Stephen Quirke 0-1 (1m).


1. Shane Ryan (Rathmore)

2. Graham O’Sullivan (Dromid Pearses), 3. Jason Foley (Ballydonoghue), 4. Tom O’Sullivan (Dingle)

5. Paul Murphy (Rathmore), 6. Tadhg Morley (Templenoe), 7. Gavin White (Dr Crokes)

8. Diarmuid O’Connor (Na Gaeil), 9. Jack Barry (Na Gaeil)

12. Paudie Clifford (Fossa), 11. Seán O’Shea (Kenmare Shamrocks), 10. Dara Moynihan (Spa)

13. Tony Brosnan (Dr Crokes), 14. David Clifford (Fossa, captain), 15. Paul Geaney (Dingle).


18. Brian Ó Beaglaioch (An Ghaeltacht) for Murphy (55)

20. Barry Dan O’Sullivan (Dingle) for Barry (55)

22. Killian Spillane (Templenoe) for Geaney (55)

26. Stephen O’Brien (Kenmare Shamrocks) for P Clifford (58)

21. Ruairi Murphy (Listry) for Moynihan (58)


1. Michael O’Reilly (Clonmel Commercials)

4. Willie Eviston (Loughmore-Castleiney), 2. Shane O’Connell (Golden-Kilfeacle), 3. Jimmy Feehan (Killenaule)

5. Kevin Fahey (Clonmel Commercials), 7. Colm O’Shaughnessy (Ardfinnan), 6. Colman Kennedy (Clonmel Commercials)

8. Mark Russell (Aherlow), 13. Steven O’Brien (Ballina, captain)

10. Emmet Moloney (Drom-Inch), 11. Teddy Doyle (Ballina), 12. Keith Ryan (Upperchurch-Drombane)

9. Jack Kennedy (Clonmel Commercials), 14. Stephen Quirke (Moyle Rovers), 15. Cathal Deely (Clonmel Commercials)


17. Luke Boland (Moyle Rovers) for Moloney (51-53, blood)

17. Boland for Fahey (55)

26. Mikey O’Shea (Mullinahone) for Doyle (58)

20. Martin Kehoe (Mullinahone) for Eviston (63)

22. Donough Leahy (Arravale Rovers) for O’Brien (63)

21. Conal Kennedy (Clonmel Commercials) for Quirke (66)

Referee: Conor Lane (Cork).

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Written by Stephen Barry and posted on

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