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Thursday 13 December 2018

Kingdom kingpins reign in Munster

Dr Crokes 1-21 M'town-Malbay 2-9

FLYING HIGH: Dr Crokes’ Johnny Buckley is tackled by Eoin Curtin. Pic; Sportsfile
FLYING HIGH: Dr Crokes’ Johnny Buckley is tackled by Eoin Curtin. Pic; Sportsfile

It was very much business as usual in the Gaelic Grounds in Limerick for the post-match presentation yesterday.

Dr Crokes accepted the Munster club SFC trophy for the fifth time since 2011 and, with the minimum of fuss, disappeared into the wind. If body language was anything to go by, they had bigger things on their mind.

Dr Crokes selector Niall 'Botty' O'Callaghan confirmed as much. Having left Páirc Uí Rinn with their "tails between their legs" 12 months ago, they had achieved their aim at the start of the year by climbing back to the summit of club football in the province.

"I made no bones about it, this time last year we were a tired team, we had no excuses whatsoever." O"Callaghan said.

"We were complacent and didn't handle our business right, but we did handle our business right this year. Fellas are really focused and today it's a lot different than this time last year, coming out of Cork with our tails between our legs, deservedly."

Miltown were gallant to the end, with Darragh McDonagh's late goal underlining their stomach for the fight.

However, they were chasing the game from early on, with David Shaw's fourth-minute goal helping the Killarney men into a 1-6 to 0-0 lead after 12 minutes.

From there it felt like an exercise in terms of how much the Kerry side would win by, rather than if they'd win.

Miltown rallied though, with Oisin Looney's fine goal getting them back in it towards the end of the first half and showed a last act of defiance when McDonagh's persistence earned him a goal.

That score meant Crokes had nine to spare at the final whistle, which wasn't to be sniffed at considering the Kerry men won their last two games in the province by 16 and 21 points.

However, St Joseph's manager Mike Neylon admitted his side had been outclassed on the day.

"I mean we're obviously disappointed." he said.

"We came here with ambitions, to see if we could snatch it and we found out that we came up against a better team."

 

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