INPHO/James Crombie Dr Crokes Johnny Buckley and Peter O'Dwyer of Kilmurry-Ibrickane.
# Nail-Biter
Dr Crokes survive strong challenge from Kilmurry-Ibrickane
The Kerry side remain in the Munster Club SFC hunt but only after a huge battle in Quilty yesterday.

Dr Crokes (Kerry) 2-8
Kilmurry-Ibrickane (Clare) 0-13

Dr Crokes were forced to withstand a major second-half fightback from Clare champions Kilmurry-Ibrickane before emerging with a one-point victory from yesterday’s Munster Club SFC quarter-final in Quilty.

The reigning provincial champions, who clinched their third successive Kerry county title last weekend, looked in complete control when Brian Looney fired the ball to the net in the 41st minute after good approach work by Chris Brady

That score pushed Dr Crokes into a 2-7 to 0-5 lead and they looked set to cruise to success after having hit 1-3 without reply since the interval.

But Kilmurry-Ibrickane, inspired by a towering display by midfielder Peter O’Dwyer, gave their home supporters something to shout about as they surged back into contention. Mark McCarthy and Shane Hickey were amongst their point-scorers as they chipped away at the deficit and with ten minutes remaining they trailed by 2-7 to 0-9.

They had the gap down to three points, 2-8 to 0-11, with only two minutes left before Noel Downes and free taker Ian McInerney cut the gap to a minimum in injury-time.

In a pulsating finish Kilmurry-Ibrickane, managed by former Kerry minor and U21 boss John Kennedy, tried desperately to grab a leveling score but Dr Crokes held on for victory in a game that was watched by the former Kerry manager and new Clare boss Mick O’Dwyer.

It was the second season in succession that Dr Crokes, captained this year by Kerry senior Kieran O’Leary, survived a major test against Kilmurry-Ibrickane as last year they only won out by three points in a game played at their own club grounds in Killarney.

Dr Crokes had got off to a dream start when Colm Cooper found the net in the early stages and at the other end they were grateful to goalkeeper David Moloney for producing a brilliant save to deny Enda Coughlan a goal.

When Daithi Casey pointed, Dr Crokes were ahead by 1-2 to 0-1 but then Kilmurry-Ibrickane started to make headway by drawing fouls from the Dr Crokes rearguard. Ian McInerney (3) and Johnny Daly duly punished those indiscretions to ensure the teams were level by the 26th minute.

Dr Crokes notched late first-half points from Johnny Buckley and Jamie Doolan to go in ahead by 1-4 to 0-5 at the interval. And that powerful start to the second-half which featured the goal from Looney looked set to secure their victory as they lead by eight points.

They got over the finishing line in the end but not without a major struggle as Kilmurry-Ibrickane launched a spirited revival. Dr Crokes now advance to face Clonmel Commercials, crowned Tipperary senior football champions yesterday, on November 18th at the semi-final stage in a game that will be played in Killarney.

2012 Munster Club SFC team-by-team guide