O’Shea plays a captain’s role as Kerry are champs

Kerry captain Paul O’Shea

IT’S obviously in the blood as David Clifford’s first cousin, Paul O’Shea, inspired Kerry to an impressive victory over champions Cork in the Munster Under 20 final in Austin Stack Park, Tralee last night.

The supremely talented Kilcummin player, who skippered his county, produced a spellbinding second half performance to clinch victory with man-of-the-match, Ruaidhri Ó Beaglaoich, topping the scoring charts with five points and Killarney Legion’s Darragh Lyne turning in a hugely accomplished and influential performance from midfield.

Kerry regained the provincial title they lost to the Rebels last season with a 0-17 to 1-9 victory but Cork didn’t make it easy and, in fact, they looked the better side in the first half – after which they led by four – with corner forward Mark Cronin particularly impressive.

Cork led at the break, 1-6 to 0-5, their goal coming from Blake Murphy, but Kerry looked a different side in the second half and they went on to boss proceedings, with a succession of opportunist scores.

Darragh Lyne and the industrious Paul Walsh were on target soon after the restart with Paul O’Shea and Seán Horan also hitting the target to draw level, level; 0-10 to 1- 7.

With O’Shea asserting himself on proceedings with a swashbuckling performance all over the field, Ó Beaglaoich kept the scoreboard keeper busy and, despite suffering a head injury that required heavy bandaging not long after coming on, impressive substitute and Tralee CBS Corn Uí Mhuiri star Seán Quilter, also got in on the scoring act.

A further brace from Ó Beaglaoich and Seán Keane sealed the win for John Sugrue’s finely-tuned side who will now face either Roscommon or Galway in the All-Ireland semi-final on St Patrick’s Day.

Others to impress for Kerry included Glenflesk attacker Patrick D’Arcy, Dan McCarthy, Killian Falvey and Seán O’Brien.

Kerry scorers: Ruaidhri Ó Beaglaoich 0-5 (0-02 frees), Paul Walsh 0-3 (frees), Patrick D’Arcy 0-2, Seán Quilter 0-2, Darragh Lyne 0-1, Paul O’Shea 0-1, Killian Falvey 0-1, Seán Horan 0-1, Seán Keane 0-1.

Kerry: Marc Kelliher, Owen Fitzgerald, James McCarthy, Dan McCarthy, Luka Brosnan, Dylan Casey, Sean O’Brien, Darragh Lyne, Michael O’Gara, Paul Walsh, Patrick Darcy, Killian Falvey, Paul O’Shea, Sean Horan, Ruaidhri Ó Beaglaoich.

Subs: Eddie Horan for Fitzgerald; Sean Keane for Walsh; Seán Quilter for Falvey (46), Seán O’Connell for S Horan; Dylan Geaney for D’Arcy.

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