Kerry struggle to beat Tipperary

Kerry 2-16 v Tipperary 0-11, Killarney FT
Kerry had to work hard to defeat Tipperary in the opening round of the Munster Senior Football Championship in Killarney on Sunday afternoon. On a day not suited to football, the kingdom were forced to play the second half with fourteen men,after Tomas O’Se saw red.

The home side played with the breeze in the opening half, but it was Tipperary who made the better start,with a point from Conor Sweeney. Declan O’Sullivan soon had Kerry back on level terms with a well taken score. The Dromid man was perhaps a little unlucky, as his chipped effort just sailed over the bar.Tipperary continued to fight for every ball and Brian Fox had them back in front 2minutes later. As the weather deteriorated the referee became too whistle happy and was contributing to what was becoming a scrappy game. Aidan O’Mahony raced forward to equalise for Kerry, and a point from Cooper gave them the lead for the first time.

Barry Grogan hit back for the visitors and it became clear that the kingdom were in for a tough afternoon. The rain started to pour down minutes later and Darren O’Sullivan broke free to score a point. Kerry were very poor and their handling was not up to their high standards. The short passing game failed to pay off and they struggled. Philip Austin caused the kingdom plenty of problems and he pointed a fine score to reduce the lead. John Evans had his Tipp team well fired up and they were more than a match for their opponents.
Donaghty knocked down a ball to Cooper and he kicked Kerry further ahead. The few times the home side tried the long ball game it created a score for them.

Eoin Brosnan followed the example of Aidan O’Mahony and raced forward to knock over a fine score. Colm Cooper then added his third to increase the lead. Kieran O’Leary pointed and suddenly Kerry looked in control. However, George Hannigan reduced the lead and then came the turning point, when Tomas O’Se saw a straight red card. Darran O’Sullivan pointed just before the break and the hosts led by 0-9 to 0-5 at the interval.

Michael Quirke replaced Seamus Scanlon as a blood substitute earlier in the half, but appeared as a permanent replacement for the midfielder after the restart. Kerry got off to a perfect start after the break, when they were awarded a penalty after Donaghty was taken down in the square. Bryan Sheehan netted the resultant spotkick and Kerry led by 1-09 to 0-5. The same player pointed a free minutes later to increase the home sides lead to 8 points. Darran O’Sullivan made a great run and fired over the bar to increase the kingdom lead.Premier captain Barry Grogan then scored two in a row to make it 1-11 to 0-7. Kerry went further ahead with Cooper kicking his fourth of the afternoon from a free. Conor Sweeny and Brian Mulvihill reduced the lead once more.

The biggest cheer of the afternoon came after 50 minutes, when Paul Galvin was introduced into the Kerry side, in place of Kieran O’Leary. Donncha Walsh pointed a minute later and Kerry led by 1-13 to 0-9. At that stage Kerry’s superior fitness began to tell and despite having a man less, the kingdom began to take control of the game. However, they had a lucky escape on the hour, when Barry Grogan scored a goal for Tipperary that was disallowed. Kerry came back with a Declan O’Sullivan point but that was cancelled out by Philip Austin. The latter hit the post a minute later and Kerry were lucky to escape once again. Colm Cooper and Declan O’Sullivan hit late points and Bryan Sheehan scored a goal in injury time to seal the win for the kingdom.

Match tracker
Declan O’Sullivan points for Kerry
Colm Cooper with a point from a free
Kerry midfield were cleaned out here today
Under ten minutes to play here in Killarney
Philip Austin with a Tipp point
Declan O’Sullivan points for Kerry
Barry Grogan with a disallowed goal, lucky for Kerry
Peter Atcherson points for Tipp
Donncha Walsh with a Kerry point
Paul Galvin on for Kerry
Brian Mulvihill points for the Premier men
Conor Sweeney points for Tipp
Colm Cooper with a free increases the lead
Grogan with another score for Tipp
Barry Grogan points for Tipp
Bryan Sheehan scored the Kerry goal from a penalty
Darran O’Sullivan with a Kerry point
Tomas O’Se was red carded late in the first half
Apologies for the technical difficulties here
O’Leary with a point after a pass from Donaghty
Five minutes to the interval
Kerry need at least 3 or 4 more before the break
Donaghty hits the crossbar, a let off for Tipp
Colm Cooper with his third point from play
Eoin Brosnan with a fine point after a one-two with Declan O’Sullivan
Michael Quirke comes on as blood sub for Scanlon
Kerry need to be playing this long ball game
Donaghy breaks down a ball to Cooper who scores
Philip Austin is the danger man for Tipp and has to be watched
John Evans certainly has his Premier men fired up for today
The game is starting to get messy, Donncha Walsh and Killian Young have both been booked
Kerry are very sluggish and slow today,struggling to get into the game
Philip Austin points for Tipperary
Alot of handling errors by Kerry,playing too much handpassing
The home side need a good lead here playing with the wind
Darren O’Sullivan puts Kerry back in front
Starting to rain here now in Killarney
Nothing between the teams here so far, Kerry could be in for a tough afternoon
Barry Grogan with the point for Tipp
Cooper gives Kerry the lead for the first time
The visitors doing very well so far, playing against the breeze
Declan O’Sullivan with two chances both saved by Matthew O’Donnell
Aidan O’Mahoney with the equaliser
scrappy game to date, ref blowing up for everything
Brian Fox gives Tipp back the lead
Tipp playing well early against the wind
had a goal chance but his chip went just over
Declan O’Sullivan with a Kerry point
Conor Sweeney with a point for Tipp
Colm Cooper with a free for Kerry but goes wide
The game is underway
Nice sunny day in Killarney but strong breeze, Kerry have the wind in first half
Seamus Scanlon replaces Anthony Maher at midfield for Kerry
This match is about to begin here in Killarney

Kerry host Tipperary in Killarney on Sunday(3.30) in the first round of the Munster Senior Football Championship. The Kingdom will be hot favourites to win this game,and in truth anything other than a home victory would rank as a major surprise.

Team news
Kerry (SFC v Tipperary) – Brendan Kealy, Killian Young, Marc Ó Sé, Tom O’Sullivan; Tomas Ó Sé, Eoin Brosnan, Aidan O’Mahony; Anthony Maher, Bryan Sheehan; Darran O’Sullivan, Declan O’Sullivan, Donnchadh Walsh; Colm Cooper, Kieran Donaghy, Kieran O’Leary.Subs – Tomás Mac a t’Saoir, Seamus Scanlon, Paul Galvin, Barry John Keane, Michéal Quirke, Padraig Reidy, Daniel Bohan, Shane Enright, David Geaney, Adrian O’Connell, Niall O’Mahony.

Tipperary (SF v Kerry): M O’Connell; A Morrissey, P Codd, C McDonald; C Dillon, L Egan, C Aylward; G Hannigan, B Jones; B Fox, P Austin, H Coghlan; C Sweeney, S Grogan, B Grogan.b

While many pundits are already tipping Kerry as All Ireland winners,this present side still has much to prove over the coming weeks. Midfield is surely a concern for management and supporters alike, with no-one yet establishing himself as the successor to Dara O’ Se. Seamus Scanlon had an injury interupted campaign in 2010 and never reached the heights of the previous season. David Moran had looked as if he was about to finally deliver on his immense potential this season, before his championship was curtailed because of injury. In truth, the duo of Anthony Maher and Bryan Sheehan are arguably the second choice midfield pairing for Kerry and have yet to deliver at the highest level.

Tommy Griffin is a huge loss at fullback and his presence around the edge of the square will be sorely missed this year. Marc O Se is a fine footballer and may well adapt to the role but Griffin was tried and tested. Similarly, Eoin Brosnan has it all to prove at centre back, having made a surprise return to the green and gold earlier this year. Many in Kerry believe that the Dr Crokes man is much better facing the ball, and he gets his chance to prove this theory on Sunday.

Having said all that, Kerry have more threat in attack than their visitors and the likes of Colm Cooper, Kieran Donaghy and Declan O’Sullivan are always a trio to fear. It is very difficult to see the Premier County causing an upset but they may just surprise a few people with their performance against this new look Kerry side. The centre of every Gaelic Football team is its heartbeat and with new men in at fullback, centreback and midfield,Kerry have a little bit to prove this weekend. They should prove well up to the task and their potent attack will almost certainly see them through, but perhaps not without a scare. Kerry to win, but quotes of even money Tipperary, with a nine point handicap start may not be a bad offer.


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