David Clifford responds angrily to an umpire following his red card. Bryan Keane/INPHO
off for cliff'

Clifford sent off as McShane returns in tense Tyrone win over Kerry

Kerry’s captain picked up a contentious second yellow card as his side fell to a one-point defeat in Edendork.

Tyrone 0-14 

Kerry 0-13 

Declan Bogue reports from Edendork 

IN THE TEETH of Storm Ciara, the smallish Tyrone crowd that braved the hellish elements were rewarded when the clouds broke and sunshine bathed the grounds on this most satisfying of one-point wins.

Club volunteers had landed at 8am to begin preparing the Edendork grounds after it became clear on Saturday that Healy Park would be incapable of hosting the game. Without a covered stand, there was room only for the hardiest of hardy supporters.

It was a much more frustrating afternoon for David Clifford, who was sent off late in the second half for a second yellow card, having kicked six points for Kerry to that point. Clifford had been booked earlier in the game, and saw a second yellow when he was dragged to the ground by defender Ben McDonnell, who was also booked. Referee Fergal Kelly made the decision following a consultation with his umpires.

Operating a twin sweeper system with Frank Burns and Colm Cavanagh covering space, Tyrone sat in for the first half and any chances they got, came from the dead ball where goalkeeper Niall Morgan came up for most and converted three, and Darren McCurry grabbed the other as they went in 0-8 to 0-4 down at the break, all Tyrone scores from Edendork men.

Morgan had a busy opening half in particular, pulling off a brilliant stop from Killian Spillane after one of his kickouts was intercepted by David Clifford. The new Kerry captain was a decoration in the first half with four points, his two from play coming from serious distance while Sean O’Shea chipped in with three – one from play and the other coming from Micheál Burns.

Once the second half got underway Tyrone got motoring with the wind advantage and chipped over the first four points of the half. As the game progressed it became apparent that home comforts for McCurry were the deciding factor. He added five points in the second half that were a highlights reel in themselves, one a fine mark and point, another a stupendous effort from the sideline.

Cathal McShane, meanwhile, made his first appearance of the year as an early second-half substitute following his turning down an opportunity with AFL side Adelaide Crows. 

Kerry’s challenge wilted as David Clifford was sent off for a second yellow card, suffering the same fate as Peter Harte earlier.

Scorers for Tyrone: D McCurry (0-6, 0-3f, 2f, 1SL), N Morgan 0-4f, T McCann, R Brennan, C McShane (f), C Meyler (m) 0-1 each

Scorers for Kerry: S O’Shea 0-6 (5f), D Clifford 0-6 (2f, 1m), M Burns 0-1

TYRONE: N Morgan; N Kelly, R McNamee, L Rafferty; T McCann, R Brennan, P Harte; C Cavanagh, C Kilpatrick; K McGeary, N Sludden, D McCurry; D Kerr, F Burns, C Meyler

Subs: C McShane for Kerr (40m), K Coney for Kelly (48m), B McDonnell for Kilpatrick (61′), HP McGeary for Burns (70′), M Cassidy for McCann (75′)

KERRY: S Ryan; J Foley, T Morley, G O’Sullivan; P Murphy, G Crowley, G White; L Kearney, J Barry; M Burns, S O’Shea, S O’Brien; K Spillane, D Clifford, P Geaney

Subs: D Moynihan for O’Brien (26′), T O’Sullivan for Spillane (46′), D O’Connor for Burns (54′), T Walsh for Kearney (68′), T Brosnan for White (73′)

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