No place for Murphy as Keane names team for Munster semi
Kerry manager Peter Keane has named his starting line-up for tomorrow's Munster SFC semi-final against Tipperary (7pm, live on Sky Sports) and the big news is that team captain Paul Murphy has once again been omitted from the starting 15.
The Rathmore veteran missed the National League semi-final against Tyrone on June 12 as he was attending his brother's wedding and he was an unused substitute in The Kingdom's last outing against Clare a fortnight ago.
Murphy has more or less been an ever-present since bursting onto the scene in 2014 but he now appears to have fallen out of favour, with newcomer Mike Breen retaining the No. 5 jersey after impressing in recent matches.
The Kerry captaincy has proven to be something of a poisoned chalice in the past with the likes of Kieran Donaghy, Bryan Sheehan, Fionn Fitzgerald, Shane Murphy and Gavin White all losing their places on the team after being nominated for the role. In Murphy, the captaincy appears to have claimed its latest victim.
There is better news for Murphy's Rathmore clubmate Shane Ryan who starts between the posts for the first time this season. Ryan has been Keane's first choice goalkeeper since Day 1 but he missed the entirety of the league due to an injury. He was fit enough to return to the bench for the championship opener against Clare and now he looks set to start in Thurles, with deputy keeper Kieran Fitzgibbon dropping to the bench.
There is one other change from the side that demolished Clare in that quarter-final as Micheál Burns replaces his cousin Dara Moynihan in the forwards. Moynihan misses out on the squad altogether, presumably due to injury.
Pa Kilkenny is added to the matchday 26 in the absence of Tony Brosnan (injured).
Kerry team to face Tipperary
1. Shane Ryan (Rathmore)
2. Brian Ó Beaglaoich (An Ghaeltacht)
3. Jason Foley (Ballydonoghue)
4. Tom O’Sullivan (Dingle)
5. Mike Breen (Beaufort)
6. Gavin Crowley (Templenoe)
7. Gavin White (Dr Crokes)
8. David Moran (Kerin’s O’Rahilly’s)
9. Diarmuid O’Connor (Na Gaeil)
10. Stephen O’Brien (Kenmare Shamrocks)
11. Seán O’Shea (Kenmare Shamrocks)
12. Paul Geaney (Dingle)
13. David Clifford (Fossa)
14. Micheál Burns (Dr Crokes)
15. Paudie Clifford (Fossa)
Killarney man Maye pockets national pool title
Local lad Matthew Maye was the standout Kerry performer at the recent All-Ireland Pool Championships, which were staged at the INEC in Killarney.
Maye navigated a competitive field at the U23 grade to reach the final, but his All-Ireland hopes appeared to be slipping away when he trailed European finalist Aaron Doherty of Cork by two frames to six. The Killarney player battled back impressively, however, and he eventually prevailed 7-6 to clinch the title.
Matthew is still only 21 years of age and last year he won the All-Ireland Junior Championship. Following his latest victory he has now shown himself to be one of the top players in the country for his age.
Another Kerry Pool Association representative, Darragh Breen, had a great run by making it to both the All-Ireland Junior final and the U18 Singles final. With 410 competitors in the junior section, reaching the final was an outstanding achievement. Darragh has put in a huge amount of time and dedication to the game in the last couple of years and he is now reaping the reward of that work.
Over 800 participants from 27 counties took part in this year’s championships. Kerry had 36 players in total – more than they ever had before – with one team in the intermediate section and two teams in the junior section.
Kerry also had two Over 50 teams and an U23 side.
Cup glory on the double for Killarney Celtic
There was cause for celebration on the double for Killarney Celtic last Sunday as both their youths and senior teams captured silverware in Tralee.
The youths enjoyed a comprehensive victory over Killorglin in the Premier A league final with Eoghan Crowley (two), Dara O’Shea, Jason O’Sullivan and Cathal Kelly all finding the target in a 5-1 win at Mounthawk Park.
A little later at the same ground, the club’s senior team had a resounding win against Tralee Dynamos in the final of the League Cup. A 21st-minute rocket from the boot of Wayne Sparling sent Celtic on their way and further strikes by Witness Odirile and Cathal O’Shea (penalty) helped secure a 3-0 win. Veteran captain John McDonagh accepted the trophy on behalf of his teammates.
Celtic can now look forward to their Greyhound Bar KO Cup final on Sunday. They will take on the same team at the same venue at 6pm.
Their attention will then turn to a mouthwatering Premier A league final against crosstown rivals Killarney Athletic. That match has been fixed for Friday, June 2 at 7.30pm.
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