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Dublin: 8°C Thursday 28 January 2021

Kerry hurlers are staying up in Division 1B after win over 12-man Laois

Laois will now play Westmeath for a place in Division 1B next year.

Image: Cathal Noonan/INPHO

Kerry 2-27
Laois 1-19

Damian Stack reports from Austin Stack Park, Tralee

KERRY DELIVERED UPON their potential in devastating fashion in this relegation play-off against a Laois side who finished the game with just twelve men.

Buoyed by a vociferous home support, Kerry surged to a six point lead by half-time and never looked back from there.

Even a first half goal for Laois’ Stephen Maher didn’t halt the Kingdom’s momentum. With Michael O’Leary rampant for Kerry at centre-forward, Laois were on the back foot from the off.

Indeed, Kerry’s half-forward line was in sensational form delivering 1-14 of Kerry’s total. The return to form of Shane Nolan – scorer of 1-9 – put Kerry in a powerful position to drive on for victory.

When they scored a goal just four minutes into the second half they seemed poised to do just that. Jack Goulding picked out the brilliant John Egan with a beautiful crossfield ball and the Ardfert man did the rest.

Kerry now led by eight. This seemed to spur Laois into action and they played some of their best hurling, gaining a foothold in the game for a spell scoring points through Charles Dwyer and Maher.

Alas indiscipline got the better of the midlanders with Willie Dunphy picking up a second yellow card on forty five minutes to make the task that bit harder for Laois.
Second half sub Ross King followed just eight minutes later with a straight red card for a foul on Keith Carmody.

The jig was now most certainly up for Laois and Kerry pushed on for home. Nolan delivered Kerry’s second goal with nine minutes remaining and, then, to make matters even worse for Laois full-forward Willie Hyland saw a straight red card for a foul on Kerry full-back Patrick Kelly.

Laois go on now to face Westmeath in a relegation play-off, while this Kerry team march purposely forward.

A marvellous evening in Tralee for the men in Green and Gold.

Scorers for Kerry: S Nolan 1-9 ( 0-6 frees), J Egan ( 1-6), M O’Leary 0-3, J Griffin, B O’Leary , M Boyle and J Goulding 0-2 each , C Harty 0-1.

Scorers for Laois: P J Scully 0-7 ( 0-3, 0-1 ’65), S Maher 1-1, C Dwyer 0-4, C Healy and W Hyland 0-2 each, E Rowland (0-1 free), P Purcell and W Dunphy 0-1 each


1. Aidan McCabe

2. Bryan Murphy
3. Patrick Kelly
4. Keith Carmody

5. Jason Diggins
6. Darren Dineen
7. Tom Murnane

8. John Griffin
9. Daniel Collins

10. Brendan O’Leary
11. Michael O’Leary
12. Shane Nolan

13. Jordan Conway
14. Mikey Boyle
15. John Egan

Subs: Jack Goulding for J Conway (h/t), Tommy Casey for D Collins, Colum Harty for B O’Leary, Brendan Brosnan for J Diggins (64), James O’Connor for J Egan (64)


1. Enda Rowland

2. Tom Delaney
3. Darren Maher
4. Cahir Healy

5. Leigh Bergin
6. Matthew Whelan
7. Ryan Mullaney

8. Patrick Purcell
9. Colm Stapleton

10. Charles Dwyer
11. Stephen Maher
12. Willie Dunphy

13. John Lennon
14. Willie Hyland
15. P J Scully

Subs: Neil Foyle for M Whelan (22), Joe Phelan for T Delaney (44), Ross King for J Lennon (48), Brendan Reddin for l Bergin (66)

Referee: Sean Cleere ( Kilkenny)

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About the author:

Damian Stack

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