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Preview: Burns in for Barry as Keane refrains from naming subs



Super 8s (Group 1)
Kerry v Mayo
Sunday at 4pm
Fitzgerald Stadium


Peter Keane has named his team for Kerry’s Super 8s opener against Mayo but it appears as though supporters will have to wait until tomorrow afternoon to find out who will be providing the back-up.

In an unusual move, Kerry have refrained from naming their 11 substitutes, instead releasing only the starting 15 ahead of the crucial fixture which will take place at the Fitzgerald Stadium in Killarney.

Keane has made one change from the team that lined out in the Munster final against Cork as Dr Crokes half forward Micheál Burns comes in for midfielder Jack Barry.

Barry’s Na Gaeil clubmate Diarmuid O’Connor will move to the middle of the park in his place.

Mayo, meanwhile, were dealt a blow earlier in the week when it was confirmed that influential defender Paddy Durcan will miss out due to injury.


The irony of this fixture is that even though it’s technically the start of a round robin series that will see each side take to the field three times over a four-week period, in reality it could well signal the end of one team’s season.

Ulster champions Donegal are arguably the form team in the country and they’ll be strong favourites to top Group 1 and advance to the semi-final. That leaves just one semi-final spot up for grabs and two into one does not go.

Well, it does, but you would need to half Mayo and Kerry and if there’s any county getting divided in two, it’s not us.

Of course, we’re being a touch disrespectful to Meath by suggesting that it’s simply a three-horse race. The Division 2 champions are in the last eight on merit on the back of their run to the Leinster final and they had some good moments in last weekend’s victory over Clare in Round 4 of the Qualifiers.

But The Royal County are rank outsiders and you would expect them to have nothing to play for by the time they face Kerry in the last game of the Super 8s.

Peter Keane, meanwhile, will naturally be hoping that Kerry still have it all to play for when they head up to Páirc Tailteann on the August Bank Holiday weekend.

For now, his focus will be entirely on the Mayo conundrum.

And what a conundrum it is. James Horan’s side are unquestionably the game’s great entertainers, which is a roundabout way of saying that they’re very good while also being wildly unpredictable.

Unpredictability doesn’t usually lend itself to success but after years of coming up short, Mayo slung that particularly irritating monkey from their back by winning the National League final in Croke Park in March.

They were dumped out of Connacht by Roscommon in May and plenty of observers have written them off in the days and weeks since, but here they are, back from the dead, descending upon Killarney like a horde of hungry zombies. Actually, that’s not a fair comparison. Zombies are much slower. And far less cynical.

You would have to be impressed with how Mayo acquitted themselves in the Qualifiers. They got the better of Armagh despite being down a number of bodies and as for last Saturday, don’t let the scoreline fool you. They hammered Galway. Cian O’Connor was back to his infuriatingly efficient best, Darren Coen was a constant threat and James Carr’s wondergoal will go down as one of the moments of the championship.

They are still without Matthew Ruane and Diarmuid O’Connor, and Durcan will be a big loss, but the unexpectedly quick return of Lee Keegan is a major boost. You can expect him to be pestering some poor Kerry player to within an inch of his life on Sunday.


Kerry are 8/15 favourites for this game. The bookies don’t often get things wrong but Mayo have beaten Kerry twice already this year and they have momentum coming through the back door, so it’s hard to get your head around that one.

The Kingdom, meanwhile, laboured at times against Clare and Cork and while there’s no denying that the future is looking bright, this Kerry team is not the finished article.

Playing in Killarney should be a boost, although you’re likely to see as much green and red as green and gold in the Park on Sunday.

It appears as though the odds should be slightly in Mayo’s favour but whatever happens, it should be a cracking game at the home of football.


Kerry team:

  1. Shane Ryan (Rathmore)
  2. Jason Foley (Ballydonoghue)
  3. Tadhg Morley (Templenoe)
  4. Tom O’Sullivan (Dingle)
  5. Paul Murphy (Rathmore)
  6. Jack Sherwood (Firies)
  7. Gavin White (Dr Crokes)
  8. David Moran (Kerins O’Rahilly’s)
  9. Diarmuid O’Connor (Na Gaeil)
  10. Micheál Burns (Dr Crokes)
  11. Seán O’Shea (Kenmare)
  12. Stephen O’Brien (Kenmare)
  13. David Clifford (Fossa)
  14. Paul Geaney (Dingle)
  15. Dara Moynihan (Spa)



Mayo team:

  1. David Clarke
  2. Chris Barrett
  3. Brendan Harrison
  4. Keith Higgins
  5. Lee Keegan
  6. Colm Boyle
  7. Stephen Coen
  8. Aidan O'Shea
  9. Donal Vaughan
  10. Fionn McDonagh
  11. Kevin McLoughlin
  12. Jason Doherty
  13. Cillian O'Connor
  14. Darren Coen
  15. James Carr
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World Rally Champion Phil Mills’ Killarney visit

Former World co-driving champion Phil Mills will be one of the guests of honour at a special Killarney and District Motor Club event next month. The club is celebrating Prodrive’s […]




Former World co-driving champion Phil Mills will be one of the guests of honour at a special Killarney and District Motor Club event next month.

The club is celebrating Prodrive’s association with the Rally of the Lakes on October 14.

The legendary British motorsport preparation firm was responsible for building some of the most iconic associated with the local rally.

The celebration, which will raise funds for the Jack and Jill Foundation, will be hosted by the voice of Irish motorsport Alan ‘Plum’ Tyndall.

Welshman Mills, who won the 2003 World Rally Championship, alongside Petter Solberg has confirmed his attendance at the Killarney Racecourse-based event.

He is just one of many superstars attending the showcase.
“Accompanying the stars will be a collection of iconic Prodrive machinery, ranging from the BMW E30 M3, all the way through to the Subaru Group A and World Rally Cars the 1990s and early 2000s,” said Killarney and District Motor Club vice chairman and organiser Mike Shea.

“All proceeds of this event will go directly to the Jack & Jill foundation helping provide support and special care to children across the country and is a once in a lifetime event.”

This event is in association with: Lyons of Limerick; C.Wharton Tool Hire Ltd; BG Motors Ltd; Castleisland Tyre Centre; Aherns Motor Group; Reen’s Rathmore Peugeot; KC Print and Moriarty’s Central Car Sales


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National Park Autumn talks series 2023

The National Parks and Wildlife Service will run a series of talks on Thursday nights in October and November. Beginning on October 5 until November 16 the six-meeting programme will […]




The National Parks and Wildlife Service will run a series of talks on Thursday nights in October and November.

Beginning on October 5 until November 16 the six-meeting programme will cover everything for the nature within the national park to the history of Killarney and its surrounding areas.

The opening lecture, by the NPWS’s Eamon Meskell will tell the story of the White-Tailed eagle in Killarney.

The following week, local historian, Owen O’Shea will deliver a speech on the Civil War in Kerry.

The final October talk is scheduled for October and its topic is the fungi growing in the park.

The lectures resume in November, on November 2, John Breen will talk about the various ant species in the park, the following week will feature a talk on the McShain family’s contribution to the town.

The final meeting, on November 16 covers the Blasket Islands, past present and future.

All events take place at Killarney House at 8pm – free admission but limited seating.

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