Kerry lose their way in Blennerville

Kerry lose their way in Blennerville


Kerry 1-9 Waterford 3-5

Kerry ladies face a few days of soul searching after falling
to Waterford in Sunday’s Munster semi-final. It’s hard
to pin point why Kerry are facing the last chance saloon
in Munster (Kerry face Cork at a home venue yet to be
finalised before going to print, with the winners to face
the Deices in the Provincial decider in a few weeks time).
Kerry players Eimear Foley and Mairead Finnegan were at
a loss afterwards to pinpoint where Kerry had let the
game after them despite leading at the interval by five
points and having the use of the wind for the second period.
” We didn’t utilise our chances after the break and just
couldn’t work the ball out of defence in the second half.
It was almost like a re-run of the Galway match (the league
semi-final) and dissapointingly from our point of view,
two of the second half goals came from unmarked players.
I thought the decision for the penalty was debatable as
I thought I blocked it fairly but the referee felt I used
the foot to pull off the save” commented Na Gaeil goalkeeper
Eimear Foley. Her thoughts were backed up by wing back
Mairead Finnegan as she felt Kerry once again flattered
to deceive when the game was there for the taking ” I
was happy enough at the break as we had done very well
into the breeze. I don’t know what happened after half-time,
we didn’t stick to the gameplan and we just couldn’t lift
it when we needed to. The strength in depth in the panel
was tested today as we have several players out through
injury and it might be tricky for the next day as some
of the girls have exams. We’ll have a right go at Cork
as we have nothing to lose at this stage as regards Munster”.

Certainly Kerry can have a cut at the All Ireland champions
Cork on Sunday but it would appear beyond them to turn
around seven days later and dethrone the Provincial champions.
The loss of captain Sarah O’Connor is incalculable to
the side and Catherine Sexton, Debra Murphy and Cassandra
Buckley would all be on Robbie Griffin’s starting 15.
Perhaps it’s strength in depth that is a real issue for
the Kerry management as they look to pick up the pieces
after the weekend’s reversal.

20 minutes in it appeared Kerry were well on their way
to the Final as points from play by Gearaldine O’Shea
and a brace by Kacey O’Driscoll (one free) along with
a cracking goal from the boot of Katie Kennelly (the Ballybunion
lady sorching the net from all of 30 yards) had Kerry
1-3 to 0-0 ahead. Waterford opened their account on 21
minutes through Michelle Ryan and the sides traded two
further points each to leave it 1-5 to 0-3 at the break.

With the wind at their backs in the second half the game
was there for Kerry’s taking. All week long Robbie Griffin
was trying to ingrain the plan of letting the fast ball
into Kerry’s inside trio of O’Shea, O’Driscoll and Edel
Murphy. Inexplicably and to their cost Kerry laboured
on the ball and a more physical and greater intensity
came from the visitors. Michelle Ryan with two and another
goal from Aoife Murphy left Kerry searching for a way
back into the game as those three green flags in eight
minutes entering the final quarter left Kerry reeling.
Kerry kept in touch with points from O’Shea and O’Driscoll
but will rue some easy misses and a last gasp effort from
16 year old Edel Murphy that was turned away by the Waterford
goalie. They’ll be some harsh words at training in the
weeks ahead but Cork always focus the minds of Kerry people
and let’s hope the backlash on Sunday is worth watching.

Kerry: Emer Foley, Caroline Kelly, Grainne N Fhlatharta,
Jenny Johnson, Siobhán Fleming, Sarah Jane Joy, Mairead
Finnegan, Margaret O’Donoghue, Neasa Ni Shuilleabháin,
Patrice Dennehy, Katie Kennelly, Amanda Brosnan, Edel
Murphy, Kacey O’Driscoll, Geraldine O’Shea Subs: Rachel
Cronin for Brosnan

Waterford: Amy Jordan, Grainne Kennelly, Rebecca Hallahan,
Eibhlís Scanlon, Louise Ryan, Mary O’Driscoll, Lorraine
Whelan, Cliona O’Keefe, Michelle Ryan, Deirdre Breathnach,
Karen Kelly, Mary O’Rourke, Mairead Wall Sub: Aoife Murphy
for Cooney


Kerry: Geraldine O’Shea and Kacey O’Driscoll (0-4, 2f),
Katie Kennelly (1-0), Patrice Dennehy (0-1)

Waterford: Michelle Ryan (2-1, 1-0 pen,1f), Aoife Murphy
(1-0), Mary O’Rourke (0-2), Linda and Mairead Wall (0-1)

Referee: Keith Delahunty (Tipperary)

Nice to report that there was a decent size crowd at Sunday
match that was preceeded by an U-12 exhibition game between
Corca Dhuibhne and CastleIsland Desmonds. Among those
spotted in the attendance was North Kerry TD Martin Ferris
who had a busy weekend of football action as his club
Ardfert continue on their remarkable championship winning
run spanning over two years.


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