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Sunday 11 December 2016

Shonagh (5) is keeping onside with Kerry dad and Dub mum

Francis Kelliher, originally from Castlegregory, Kerry, with wife June, from Dublin, and their daughter Shonagh, 5, at home in Rathfarnham, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
Francis Kelliher, originally from Castlegregory, Kerry, with wife June, from Dublin, and their daughter Shonagh, 5, at home in Rathfarnham, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
Dublin and Kerry fan Shonagh Kelliher, 5, at home in Rathfarnham, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn
Francis Kelliher, originally from Castlegregory, Kerry, with wife June, from Dublin, and their daughter Shonagh, 5, at home in Rathfarnham, Dublin. Picture: Caroline Quinn

It's a tense time at the Kelliher dinner table these days as committed Kerryman Francis and his blue-blooded Dublin wife June prepare for the All-Ireland Final.

But before their respective counties thrash it out on the pitch in front of 82,000, the GAA loving couple have taken the battle for Sam Maguire to the front of their house.

Half of their home in Whitchurch, Rathfarnham, is green and gold, while the other half is decked out in navy and blue. The same can be said for their five-year-old daughter, Shonagh, who has taken to wearing a half-and-half jersey in order to keep both parents on side.

"Any time Kerry are playing I always have my stuff out" says Francis.

BUNTING

"And when Dublin are playing she does hers. But now that both are playing I usually push the boat out and do a little more.

"I'm actually waiting on bunting to come from Kerry because I can't find any up here," he said.

Both husband and wife are trying to outdo each other with June relegating Francis's Kerry decor to the side of the house with the smaller window.

"I have demoted him to the box-room window," says June.

"Dublin takes priority and gets the full window."

Kelliher2.jpg
Dublin and Kerry fan Shonagh Kelliher, 5, at home in Rathfarnham, Dublin

However, June believes her husband may have resorted to some sneaky tactics in return. "I have another flag somewhere, I know I had a big Dublin one - so I think he's actually hidden that on me."

When asked how each spouse will respond if the other's team wins both spouses reveal themselves to be good sports.

"At least he would be happy for me. I think secretly now he enjoys the Dubs because he goes to all the Dublin games with me."

Francis said: "It'll be tough going if Dublin win, but I usually get into the middle of it and go back to the Hill 16 pub.

"I might sing the Rose of Tralee and things like that. We just have the craic like."

However, their daughter's alliances are still a bone of contention.

Although she wears a half-and-half jersey, June claims "the Dublin side is on her heart". Yet her dad refuses to give in. "It's as yet unconfirmed, I'll keep chipping away at her," he said.

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