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11th Feb 2017

Kerry GAA collectively shitting themselves after two worrying pieces of news

This would be the worst thing to happen

Conan Doherty

Please no.

Please. Please. Please.

Just when we thought Éamonn Fitzmaurice was at the head of something special once more. Just when we thought the Kingdom were ready to renew their great rivalry with the capital and challenge Dublin with vigour for All-Ireland glory once more.

Just when we thought they had assembled the best full forward line in the country with Paul Geaney and James O’Donoghue fit from the start of the season and the unleashing of protege Jack Savage on the world.

On Saturday night though, that revolution stalled a little.

Mayo went to Tralee – sporting a glorious new away kit – and they took both points back up the road with them after mounting an admirable comeback to see off Kerry on a scoreline of 1-10 to 0-15.

It turns out that David Clarke’s first half penalty save on David Moran proved crucial as Stephen Rochford’s side held on to win with two points to spare.

But whilst the defeat might sting the Kingdom – and especially Pat Spillane who all but wrote off Mayo after last week’s opening round defeat to Monaghan – the news on two of their players is more important.

Spillane would definitely advocate switching attention to that anyway.

Before the game, one change was made to the Kerry team.

James O’Donoghue didn’t feature at all for the hosts and, in his absence, rumours began circulating that he was still struggling from an ankle injury sustained previously. It’s believed that he suffered a hamstring strain though.

To make matters worse, Paul Geaney didn’t last long either.

Nor did Killian Young. Two forced first half subs.

Geaney is said to have pulled a muscle but early reports is that neither injury is too serious.

Geaney and O’Donoghue are destructive on their worst days. The pair have formed a formidable partnership for the Kingdom and, with the older guard gradually moving on in the last few years, Kerry now look to that full forward duo to lead the way.

In 2016, however, they didn’t get either up to full speed until the middle of the championship and the sight of the two of them in January was heartwarming – it was terrifying if you weren’t from Kerry.

Now, it’s a case of lighting a candle and hoping for the best. Just when we thought this year might’ve been different.

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