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How will Kerry line out in the championship?

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The race for the 2018 Sam Maguire began in earnest last weekend with games in the three provinces but no action in Munster. That  Munster series gets underway tomorrow at the Gaelic Grounds where Clare and Limerick meet at 7pm. It is of special interest to Kerry as the winners of tomorrow’s game will meet the Kingdom in the Munster semi-final on the June bank holiday weekend (June 3) in Killarney. The other semi-final is on June 2 when Cork meet the winners of Tipperary and Waterford. The Munster final is fixed for June 23 and if Kerry are in it the fixture will be an away game for Kerry. While tradition points to a Kerry v Cork Munster final, it’s not a foregone conclusion. Clare v Limerick should be a very close affair but I fancy Clare to win this one, even if though they are away from home.

Kerry fans will be assessing the chances of a team that will be very different to the one which lined out last year. Retirements of defenders Marc ó Sé and Aidan O’Mahony have weakened the new Kerry backline and that was very evident in the league when Kerry conceded 10 goals. Mark Griffin will probably be at full back with Shane Enright at corner back and Fionn Fitzgerald in the other corner. Paul Murphy will certainly be selected, probably at wing back but he can also play in the corner. Tadhg Morley, Killian Young and Peter Crowley will be hoping to start in the other two half back positions.

Other options include Brian ó Beaglaoich, Jason Foley, Ronan Shanahan and Gavin White, who is just back after a long spell out through injury. He came on in the last 20 minutes for Dr Crokes in the club final against Dingle and scored a goal. He has the potential to make it at intercounty level but will not start in this game. I could see him entering the fray at some stage in the second half depending on how the game is developing. The defence as a whole is the weak link in this team. David Moran took a long rest during the league but he will line out at midfield along side Jack Barry. Johnny Buckley is an option also.

Forwards win matches and Kerry have some exciting options. I don’t expect Kieran Donaghy to start , but James O Donoghue will get the nod if he has fully recovered from the injury which kept him out of action for so long. It will be very interesting to see if Fitzmaurice will give senior championship starts to two brilliant ex-minors, David Clifford and Seán O’Shea. Micheál Burns has slotted in well in the league so he might get a call up at wing forward. Paul Geaney has been consistently Kerry’s best forward for the past few years and Stephen O’Brien also has plenty of experience. Who will lead the attack in the absence of Gooch who has retired? Donaghy is a good playmaker, but he hasn’t the legs for the 40. They may take a gamble with James O’Donoghue who has the pace. Johnny Buckley and Daithí Casey are other options, but they may not be in the frame to start.

There is a panel of 40 players training in the new complex at Currans so Eamonn Fitzmaurice has plenty of choices in this his sixth season in charge. My hunch is that he will start three new players and hope that they will provide the winning blend probably against Clare. Exciting times for Kerry supporters and this is just round one. They should be good enough to win in Munster on route one and so avoid the big guns in the round robin series later in the summer.

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Local author’s debut book makes Late Late Toy Show

Killarney art psychotherapist Katie O’Donoghue was delighted to spot her first children’s book on last Friday’s Late Late Toy Show! ‘The Little Squirrel Who Worried’ was written and illustrated by Katie, and published by Gill Books in July. With almost every eye in Ireland on the Toy Show every year, children’s authors, illustrators and publishers […]

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Killarney art psychotherapist Katie O’Donoghue was delighted to spot her first children’s book on last Friday’s Late Late Toy Show!

‘The Little Squirrel Who Worried’ was written and illustrated by Katie, and published by Gill Books in July.

With almost every eye in Ireland on the Toy Show every year, children’s authors, illustrators and publishers compete for a much-coveted spot on the set. Aware that her book had been sent to Ryan, but not having heard anything from RTÉ, Katie was thrilled to see it in a prominent position. It was a wonderful surprise to discover ‘The Little Squirrel Who Worried’ had been placed in the front row of the book corner. There, it had a little chair of its own and was even embraced by a cuddly toy.

It was visible many times over the course of the evening, particularly during the book discussion, an incredibly proud moment for first-time author Katie.

“I have to admit, when I saw ‘The Little Squirrel Who Worried’ cradled in the teddy’s arms, I may have jumped up and down with excitement,” Katie told the Killarney Advertiser.

What began as a lockdown project while Katie was living in London and missing her family in Kerry, is providing comfort to children around the world.

Using a gentle story with gorgeous illustrations, Little Squirrel and his forest friends teach young people a variety of simple coping techniques.

“These skills will benefit children their entire lives and the book is even helpful for adults who are prone to worrying and overthinking,” she added.

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No 2021 return for Killarney on Ice

By Michelle Crean Fans of the ice will be disappointed to hear that Killarney on Ice will not return for a second year. Following its huge popularity year on year since returning to Killarney in 2015, the promoters of Killarney on Ice are disappointed to confirm that they are unable to operate again this year. […]

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By Michelle Crean

Fans of the ice will be disappointed to hear that Killarney on Ice will not return for a second year.

Following its huge popularity year on year since returning to Killarney in 2015, the promoters of Killarney on Ice are disappointed to confirm that they are unable to operate again this year.

Rising case numbers, uncertain COVID-19 restrictions, and insurance challenges have been the main drivers behind the decision not to open, according to the company.

As Kerry’s only festive ice rink, the facility has brought much fun and life to the town over the years, attracting thousands of people from all over the county, and indeed the whole country, with many families coming to stay overnight in Killarney and enjoying all that this great town has to offer.

As well as friends and families coming to skate, schools, youth clubs, sports teams and employees of local companies use the group booking discount rate to plan sessions on the ice, and Killarney on Ice would like to thank them all for their continuing loyalty.

“We sincerely hope to be back better and stronger in 2022, and we look forward to welcoming all of our valued customers,” Tim O’Donoghue, the promoter of the rink, told the Killarney Advertiser.

“In the meantime, we wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a prosperous New Year.”

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