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Dr Crokes survive with win in Kerry senior relegation play-off against Legion

The 2019 All-Ireland club finalists retained their senior status in the Kingdom.

Dr Crokes player Brian Looney.
Dr Crokes player Brian Looney.
Image: Bryan Keane/INPHO

DR CROKES SURVIVED the test in today’s Kerry’s senior football relegation play-off as their local Killarney rivals Legion are set to face life in the intermediate ranks in the Kingdom in 2022.

Dr Crokes ran out 2-18 to 1-8 victors in the showdown that threw-in at noon at Fitzgerald Stadium.

The result is a relief for the Lewis Road club, who had contested the semi-final of the county senior championship a fortnight ago and only lost out by a point after a second-half revival from Kerins O’Rahilly’s.

Despite coming so close to qualifying for the Bishop Moynihan Cup decider, Dr Crokes had to face into the relgation battle after finishing bottom of their club championship group.

If the pressure was on a club that won the All-Ireland senior club title in 2017 and contested the Croke Park final in 2019, it looked to have increased early on when a Conor Keane goal helped Legion go in front 1-3 to 0-4.

But Dr Crokes countered in the second quarter to settle their challenge and lead 0-11 to 1-5 at the interval.

James O’Donoghue had contributed some vital points in the first half for Legion but in the second half, both himself and former Kerry team-mate Jonathan Lyne were sent-off as things went downhill for Legion.

Dr Crokes were in front 1-15 to 1-8 at the water break with Brian Looney raising a green flag and Tom Doyle struck their second goal late on as they ran out victors by 13 points.

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Legion will be facing into intermediate football for the first time since 2005, while their players will also be eligible for the East Kerry squad, the county senior title winners in 2019 and 2020.

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