Kerry Petroleum Club Championship
Kerins O Rahillys 1-16 Rathmore 3-09
The crucial first round of this year’s club championship saw us travel to Killarney to face a Rathmore side that was surely buoyant following their recent win in the Credit Union Co League over All Ireland club runners-up, Dr Crokes. The fact that Crokes had previously beaten O’Rahillys in the Co League, perhaps more comfortably than the four-point winning margin suggested, put the extent of the challenge facing the Strand Road men in perspective. Also, the Blues supporters were surely even more nervous when they were informed prior to throw-in of the loss of Kerry county star Tommy Walsh, along with stalwart midfielder Con Barrett from the named starting lineup.
The grand old stadium was looking resplendent on a glorious day for football but both sides were guilty of shooting wides before Jack Savage converted two frees before the sixth minute, with a Rathmore point from play sandwiched in between. The East Kerrymen struck for the game’s first goal three minutes later. There was a strong suspicion of a pick-up from the ground by the corner forward in the build-up but there was nothing wrong with his delivery to the edge of the square, nor with the finish despite Gary Kissane getting a hand to the shot. Rathmore then spurned a glorious chance of another goal straight from the kickout, but it only took one more minute for them to raise another green flag when an O’Rahillys’ pass from defence failed to go to hand and the Reds exacted the maximum benefit. Two more Rathmore points followed in the next five minutes, one from a free and the other a superb effort from 40 metres from Kerry goalkeeper Shane Ryan, who lined out at full forward and was proving a real handful for the Strand Road defence. After just 16 minutes, the score now stood at 2-3 to 0-2 in the Red’s favour and although Jack Savage pointed a free, a similar score for Rathmore restored the seven-point cushion. Undaunted, O’Rahillys rattled off five unanswered points in a seven-minute spell, with two from placed balls by Jack Savage. The other three comprised Tom Hoare completing a lovely move from 35 metres, an overlapping Cormac Coffey kicking a fine score from the right-hand side and the keeper tipping over a blasting shot from Barry John Keane. However, in the last minute of regulation time, Rathmore lifted the siege when they pointed from play after once again engineering a two v two situation with the Strand Road full back line. Back came O’Rahillys and Keane was unlucky to see his fisted effort come back off the post, but Rathmore took full advantage in the second minute of injury time when Ryan beat his man on the inside and centered to an unmarked colleague who gave Kissane no chance from close range with the last kick of the first half. So, it seemed at half time that the O’Rahillys’ comeback was dead in the water as Rathmore went into the break with a six-point lead, the scoreline standing at 3-5 to 0-8 in their favour.
However, on the resumption Strand Road took control of the game, with county player Gavin O’Brien now more influential in the middle of the field where he was ably assisted by Tom Hoare. They declared their intentions within the first seven minutes of the half, which featured three more pointed frees from Jack Savage, including two superb efforts from close to the right-hand touchline – with Rathmore managing one pointed free in reply. By the end of the third quarter, the Tralee side had made it a one-point game, with the Savage brothers both landing 35-metre points from play, Gearóid with his left foot and Jack with a right-footed effort that was followed by another well-taken score by Barry John Keane. In between, O’Rahillys also posted two wides, one from Keane which saw himself and fellow Kerry player Aidan O’Mahony booked in the aftermath. Rathmore were then dealt another blow when they lost Kerry defender Paul Murphy to injury, but they rallied to convert another placed ball to forge two points ahead after 17 minutes. Back came Strand Road immediately though and good interplay between Karl Mullins, Ross O’Callaghan and Shane Brosnan was complimented by a superb take and swivel from Jack Savage who fired over the crossbar and we had a one-point game again. O’Rahillys’ high press was the dominant feature of the game now and it paid the ultimate dividend in the 20th minute when they forced a turnover close to the Rathmore goals. Firstly O’Brien’s effort was blocked, but the ball broke to Barry John Keane and although his initial effort was also deflected into the air, the skipper rose highest to fist the rebound into the net and Strand Road led for the first time since the ninth minute by 1-15 to 3-7. Two minutes later, Gearóid Savage kicked another beautiful point from 34 metres as the Tralee men tightened their grip on proceedings. The main feature of the game at this stage was their composed play, with John Ferguson and subs Danny O’Sullivan, Con Barrett and Seán Collins prominent, leaving Rathmore with it all to do in the final eight minutes. Their cause wasn’t helped by the loss of O’Mahony to a second yellow card two minutes later, but they persisted with the tactic of trying to organise two v two situations close to the O’Rahillys’ goals, although the Blues were quicker to funnel back now with Coffey and Ryan Carroll excelling in this area. Rathmore never threw in the towel though and in a pulsating finish, they managed to point two frees in the five minutes of injury time played. They were beaten by the clock in this quest however and ultimately were undone by the cocktail of pressure, firepower and composure exhibited by O’Rahillys, particularly in the second half of a most enjoyable encounter.
Kerins O’Rahillys: G Kissane; D Murphy, R O’Callaghan, C Coffey (0-1); D McElligott, S Brosnan, K Mullins; G O’Brien, T Hoare (0-1); R Carroll, J Ferguson, S Walsh; G Savage (0-2), J Savage (0-10, 0-8f), BJ Keane (1-2). Subs: C Barrett, D O’Sullivan, S Collins, T Walsh, S Foley , Rory O’Connor, J O’Leary, G Dillane, A Roche, B Scannell, D Nix, J Keane, D O’Brien, K Mangan, Rob O’Connor, G Hartnett, C Hayes.
CÚINNE NA NÓG
The Academy continued at a sunny Ballyrickard at 11am on Sunday last. As always a huge thank you to the coaches who are as eager to teach as the children are to learn. The parents watched on while enjoying a warm cuppa. A big congratulations to our players of the week, namely;
u6 boys: Cameron Donnelly
u8 boys: Luca Fosco and Kyle Power
u6 girls; Clodagh Connor
u8 girls; Meabh Kennedy
u10 girls; Megan Gaynor
We travelled to North Kerry to take on Duagh in our 1st game in the county league. It was a cold evening with a strong breeze making good football difficult at times. Our captain, Cian Moran decided to play against the breeze in the first half. The boys in blue put in a great defensive display leaving the half time score 0-07 to 0-03 in favour of the home side.
Duagh moved the ball well with centre forward Mike Galvin instrumental in setting up many attacks and getting good support from midfielders Luke Sheridan and Cormac Dillon while Owen Dowling was dominant at full back. However, O’Rahillys had impressive players in Jake Foley and Brendan Meehan, with Tomas Kennedy and Ryan Houlihan working their socks off trying to set up attacks. Cian Lynch and Conor Cronin were full of running in the half forward line with Jamie ,Conal and Odhran trying hard.
The 2nd half was a tight affair with Duagh mainly on top but with Strand Road five points down, Ryan had a shot rattle off the crossbar with the goalie beaten only for the ball to go back up the field where Duagh notched the only goal of the game. Final score, Duagh 1-12, O’Rahillys 0-5. Although beaten, the lads played well although up against a bigger physical team. The next game is against Annascaul/Lispole at home on Wednesday, 10th April at 7pm.
Our under 12s won their first county league game of the year on Sunday last v Geenvevguilla in Ballyrickard on a scoreline of 5-13 to 2-2. A blistering first half put us in the driving seat at 5-7 to no score at half time but that was down to two great saves from Evan Daly. Daniel Aneke and Odhran Foley commanded at the back and with Oisin Cronin controlling midfield the forwards played some lovely football. Jamie McCarthy (2), Brayden Pierce and Nick and Jude Lacey had the first half goals. The second half was a much more even contest with great attacking play from both sides. Jamie McCarthy was the focal point of most attacks and was leading scorer with 2-4. Nick and Jude Lacey had 1-2 each, with Ryan Onekeweyre and Ruairí Kennedy raising white flags on two occasions. Brayden Pierce added a point to his first half goal to cap a great performance. Overall a great start to the league with Brendán Meehan the man of the match from half back. On to next week where we play Spa away from home at 6pm on Sunday, 14th April.
Our u16s started their Central Region campaign last Monday night with an away game to Milltown/Castlemaine. We always felt this was going to be a tough battle. Milltown/Castlemaine started well, assisted by a strong breeze and seemed to settle well into the game. We struggled in many areas of the field but still went in at half time only four points down, 0-11 to 0-07.
It took us a while to settle in the second half but we still stayed in touch with the opposition and a well worked move gave us a deserved goal. This only left two between the sides but Milltown/Castlemaine picked up the breaks and eventually came away winners on a scoreline of 1-15 to 1-10.
Our next game, fixed for Monday, 8th April has been postponed due to the death of one of the Annascaul boy’s mother. We extend our deepest sympathies to Colman and all his team mates at this very sad time.
Excitement is building amongst the girls as they’re heading to Croke Park on the first day of their Easter holidays, Monday April 15th. It will be a great experience for them and they will have great memories of playing in Croke Park. Thanks to everyone who has returned their sponsorship cards so far. Could everyone else please return their cards as we need to pay for your new gear etc.
We are holding a table quiz in Charlie’s Bistro in the club on Sunday, April 14th at 5pm to help raise funds for the U10 girls and U12 boys who will also be heading to Croke Park for their annual Activity Day. Both teams are receiving new gear for their trips.
We need to raise more money to pay for gear etc. We would appreciate as much support as possible with this and ask club members, friends, families and our community to help out. Entry is €10 each and is open to all ages both young and old. There will be spot prizes and raffles on the day and thanks to Nora for organising this. For further details please contact Shirley (086) 8713552.
Gear will be handed out girls on Sunday evening. We will send on an itinerary during the week for next Monday’s trip.
We were home to Churchill in the North Kerry League. Well done to our players who tried hard and never gave up. Between injuries and illness we didn’t have a full team but our U10s came to our rescue. They never gave up and were beaten by an older and stronger Churchill side. Training continues on Tuesday and Thursday.
We are away to Glenflesk in the Co. League for our next game. Best of luck to the girls and their coaches. Best wishes to Anú who is being confirmed this week.
We were home to Fossa last Thursday – a great game from start to finish. Well done to the girls and their mentors. We drew with Fossa in a very exciting game, match report to follow.
We are away to Castlegregory on Friday, throw in at 6.45p.m.
Training continues on Tuesday at 6.45p.m.
Training continues on Tuesday and Thursday at 6.45p.m. in preparation for our next game.
Training at 6.45p.m. in Healy Park, Ballyrickard on Tuesdays and Thursdays. We’re looking forward to meeting our new ladies this Tuesday and welcome them to our club. We hope that you will enjoy your football here in Strand Road.
We continue to recruit for all age groups. For further details contact Shirley (086) 8713552. We look after our ladies here in our club.
SNIPPETS from “top of the right”
• The Snippets Man hears that allegedly Frank “Walla” O’Connor thinks that compiling the Club Notes was easy this week.
• It may not be as easy as it looks?
• Meanwhile, Mike Mangan’s search for the elusive Snippets Man continues!
• Could he be found collecting €500 from Mike as winner of the club’s U.S. Masters Golf competition?
The club wishes to extend our sympathies to the family and friends of Edmund Stack of Westcourt, Caherslee, Siobhán Colleran of Beenoskee, Ballyard and Liam Hurley of Knockmoyle. RIP. Ar dheis Dé go raibh a n-anamacha.