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Thursday 21 November 2019

Tough test for Crokes

Johnny Buckley
Johnny Buckley

That Dr Crokes are tomorrow chasing their eighth Kerry title this decade and second four-in-a-row since 2010 tells the story of just how dominant the Killarney men have been in the county.

But for selector Niall 'Botty' O'Callaghan, a win this weekend would be the "best" of any county title the club have won in that glorious run of success that has also seen them claim an All-Ireland club title in 2017.

Perhaps part of this thinking comes from the figures they have lost since their St Patrick's Day defeat to Corofin. Manager Pat O'Shea stepped down, while Eoin Brosnan left the playing group after 22 years of senior football. Colm 'Gooch' Cooper hasn't been involved either.

Today Crokes take on a brilliant East Kerry divisional side led by David Clifford.

"It's the old dog on the road against the new young buck coming up," O'Callaghan says of tomorrow's showdown.

"And it promises to be a great game. From our point of view, if we can get over the line on Sunday it will probably be the best of the last ten years.

"I think so, with the injuries we've had, the trials and tribulations, and the serious job (new manager) Edmund O'Sullivan (has done) in terms of keeping it seamless.

"We have to hope our experience will negate their pace. That the likes of Johnny Buckley will just dominate the middle of the field like he does.

"For the purists, it will be a fabulous game of football."

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