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All-Ireland Championship: Kerry cruise to semi-final spot

By Micheal McGeary

Kerry 1-20 Limerick 0-10: Kerry progressed to the All-Ireland football championship semi final with the minimum fuss in Croke Park yesterday.

Limerick had made it through to the quarter-final via the All-Ireland qualifiers, but here they never did themselves justice and for the most part looked, at best, a third division side.

They needed to start well but from the ball was thrown in they were edgy and nervous which contributed to them missing a number of good scoring opportunities before Kerry grabbed the initiative.

Kerry manager Jack O’Connor was gracious in victory: “We hadn’t played a game in four weeks so it too us time to settle, but fair play to Limerick, they put it up to us for long periods.

“Unfortunately Darren O’Sullivan tweaked a hamstring which means he faces a race against time to be ready for the All-Ireland semi-final.”

O’Sullivan, playing in the left corner of the attack, always looked the part and by half time he had already conjured up a goal and three points as Limerick struggled to stay afloat.

The goal was something special, O’Sullivan flicking Bryan’s Sheehan pass to the net without breaking his stride nine minutes before the interval.

The winners led 1-8 to 0-4 at half time and when Limerick hit three points without reply on the restart, Kerry’s response was emphatic and immediate.

O’Connor’s men simply moved up a gear adding five unanswered points to effectively close out the match.

It took Limerick 17 minutes before they managed their fourth score of the second half, knocked between the posts by John Riordan.

It was a measure of Kerry’s overall dominance that O’Connor was able to make a triple substitution Eoin Brosnan, Anthony Maher and Paul Galvin all called ashore before the finish.

Limerick: B Scanlon 0-1; T Stack, S Gallagher, S Lavin; J Riordan 0-1, J McCarthy, P Ranahan; S Buckley, J O'Donovan; S Kelly 0-4, J Mullane, M Sheehan; G Collins 0-1,, S O'Carroll 0-1, I Ryan 0-2.

Kerry: B Kealy; K Young 0-1, M Ó Sé, T O'Sullivan; T Ó Sé 0-2, E Brosnan, A O'Mahony; A Maher 0-1, B Sheehan 0-6, P Galvin, Declan O'Sullivan,0-3 D Walsh, C Cooper 0-3, K Donaghy 0-1, Darran O'Sullivan 1-3

Referee: P McEnaney (Monaghan).

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