Dr Crokes reign as Kerry senior football kingpins was ended by East Kerry in emphatic fashion at Austin Stack Park today.
Bidding for a fourth SFC success in-a-row, the Killarney outfit played second fiddle to the divisional side from start to finish and lost out on a scoreline of 2-14 to 1-7.
David Clifford was, once again, very much to the fore for the winners and pick-pocketed Crokes to the tune of 1-3.
The All-Star forward’s brilliant 34th minute goal parachuted East Kerry into a seven-point lead while he turned provider as Darragh Roche put the game beyond Dr Crokes’ reach on the three-quarter hour mark.
Despite playing against the wind, East Kerry built up an 0-8 to 0-5 lead by the halfway stage.
They lost the services of left half-back Pa Warren to a second yellow card shortly after the resumption but that set-back failed to knock them out of their stride with Clifford’s brother Paudie also exerting a big influence on proceedings.
Crokes, meanwhile, finished the game with 13 men after midfielder Mark O’Shea and Mike Moloney (second yellow) were also issued with their marching orders following separate second-half incidents.
Clifford’s county team-mate Gavin White scored a consolation goal for Dr Crokes but the result means that Austin Stacks will fly the flag for Kerry in next Sunday’s Munster Club SFC semi-final fixture with Nemo Rangers.
East Kerry - J Devane; C O'Donoghue, J Sherwood, N Donohue; D O'Donoghue, P Warren, L Kearney; S Cronin, R Buckley; M Foley (0-3), P Clifford (0-1), B O'Donoghue; D Clifford (1-3, 0-1f), D Roche (1-2, 0-1f), E Cronin (0-4). Subs: D Spillane for B O'Donoghue, P Doyle (0-1) for M Foley, D Brosnan for S Cronin, P De Brun for D Roche, M McCarthy for E Cronin, E Fitzgerald for R Buckley.
Dr Crokes - S Murphy; J Payne, M Moloney, F Fitzgerald; D O'Leary, G White (1-1), B Looney; J Buckley, M O'Shea (0-1); M Burns, M Potts, G O'Shea; T Brosnan (0-4, 1f), D Casey, K O'Leary (0-1). Subs: D Naughton for G O'Shea, A O'Sullivan for D O'Leary, J Griffin for B Looney, P Clarke for M Potts, B Falvey for M Burns, C O'Regan for J Payne.
Referee - B Griffin.Tweet