Will Kerins O’Rahillys And Austin Stacks Make It To The Semis?

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Kerins O’Rahillys came out on top the last time they faced East Kerry in the championship back in 2015.

TWO Tralee clubs will be looking to advance to the semi-finals of the Garvey’s Supervalu County Senior Football Championship this Saturday evening at Austin Stack Park.

At 4pm, Kerins O’Rahillys face East Kerry who will be hoping their Kerry minor star David Clifford can work his magic, but it’s a different ball game in the county championship.

Kerins O’Rahillys will be at full strength with players who were abroad for the summer returned, injuries healed and their Kerry stars David Moran, Barry John Keane and Jack Savage ready for club action.

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The Blues had a tough league campaign by their standards — due to the many absentees — but they’ve had some impressive wins in the championship beating two highly-rated sides, South Kerry and Dingle.

East Kerry lost their round 1 game against Rathmore, but they’ve been scoring for fun since, notching up 7-39 against fellow divisional sides Mid Kerry and St Brendan’s.

Both sides are prone to conceding goals though, so this could be a high-scoring affair. The last time the sides met in the championship back in 2015, Strand Road won by 4-19 to 2-8, but it’ll be a lot closer this time.

It’ll be interesting to see how David Clifford gets on in the white heat of the championship battle this time out (he’s already scored two goals in previous rounds), but the Tralee side should have too much in the middle third to supply the talented forwards to the do the necessary damage.

Kerins O’Rahillys by four points

The second part of that double bill sees Austin Stacks face West Kerry at 5.45pm.

Fiachna Mangan and Eamonn Hickson tussle for possession in last year’s championship game. Photo by Dermot Crean

Kieran Donaghy will need to be at his best against a side who will have improved since the last time they met in the same venue in 2016, when the Tralee side win by 0-21 to 1-13.

Funnily enough,  both teams have faced the same opposition in two rounds of the championship so far.

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Stacks needed a replay to beat St Kierans in Round 1, while West Kerry narrowly defeated the divisional side in Round 2.

The Tralee team ran riot against Killarney Legion in Connolly Park back in June (4-13 to 3-6) in Round 2, but West Kerry had a closer affair in July with James O’Donoghue and Co. winning by a goal (1-18 to 0-18).

An Gaeltacht had a fine season in the County League, so their players in the side will be full of confidence. West Kerry are battle-hardened too after close encounters so far in the championship and will be hoping to reverse last year’s result.

The Rockies have had a miserable league campaign and were relegated to Division 2. This won’t have pleased the faithful in their centenary year, but this is the championship.

Stacks have some fine players but they’ll need to be at their best on Saturday evening. If ‘Star’ can reproduce his Kerry form and David Mannix is on his game, it could set them up for victory.

Stacks by three points

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