The only talking point of this uneven contest was the quality of the Kerry goals, with dual star Padraig Boyle (an All-Ireland Minor B and U21 hurling medal winner) scoring two, with his opening goal a real gem when he dribbled soccer style through a forest of Waterford defenders before side footing the ball to net for a goal a sheer class.
In truth, Waterford were never at the races as Kerry dominated the midfield exchanges with Gary O’Leary and Shaun Keane outstanding.
Despite the Kerry attack being wasteful in the extreme, kicking eight first-half wides, they still led 2-6 to 0-4 with Jamie Moriarty adding to Boyle’s 23rd minute strike with a superb goal in injury time when he fielded a high Jeff O’Donoghue centre before crashing the ball home.
The second-half was purely academic as Waterford struggled in every department with the notable exceptions of Ray Ó Ceallaigh, Eamon Power and Gavin Nugent. Kerry kicked points at will with Ciaran Keating, Thomas Hickey and Jeff O’Donoghue scoring some excellent points.
The Kingdom added two late goals from Padraig Boyle and Thomas Hickey that put a gloss on the margin of victory but they’ll be expecting a big improvement against Tipperary in the semi-final.
Scorers for Kerry: T Hickey 1-5 (0-4 frees), P Boyle 2-1, J O’Donoghue 0-5 (0-3 frees), J Moriarty 1-1, C Keating 0-2, M O’Connor and S Keane 0-1 each
Waterford scorers: G Nugent 0-2, E Power 0-2, T Burke 0-2 frees.
S Murphy; P Ó Sé, T Morley, C Fitzgerald; M O’Connor, R Murphy, K Murphy; G O’Leary, S Keane; T Hickey, P Boyle, J O’Donoghue; D O’Brien, C Keating, J Moriarty.
Subs: P Wrenn for K Murphy (54), K McCarthy for J Moriarty (54), I McCarthy for D O’Brien (56).
C Mulcahy; P Houlihan, D Power, P Curran; L Ó Corrain, R O’Ceallaigh, S Hyslop; E O’Toole, D Hallihan; G Nugent, E Power, T Burke; E Kiely, R Donnelly, M Kiely.
Subs: M Curry for D Power (41), J Jones for E O’Toole (51)
Referee: K O’Brien (Tipperary)