Six days after his substitution in the Kingdom’s Munster SFC semi-final defeat by Cork, Donaghy was the star man in the closing stages of Saturday night’s victory over St Kieran’s in Austin Stack Park.
He admitted: “It’s good for myself more than anything else. I could have gone either way when I missed the penalty. I could have put the head down and felt sorry for myself but thankfully I dug deep and came up with a few scores and set up a few scores. It is always good to put in a performance. I’m looking forward to getting back in with Kerry and looking forward to the next four weeks training and seeing who we get in the qualifiers.”
After coming close in recent years, Donaghy stressed this Stacks team believe they can end their 18-year wait for a county title this season.
“That’s what we’re pushing for. We’re not out here for the craic, we’re trying our best to win and to get the best out of ourselves. I thought our backs really won it for us. Late on they were very tight and it gave us a platform to drive on and win it.”
Donaghy began the game in midfield, battling with Kerry teammate Seamus Scanlon, before reverting to an attacking role. “(Seamus) Scanlon and myself have gone up against each other in Kerry training. He’s a very tough cookie and I think I softened him up a bit for (William) Kirby!
“He’s a very hard honest player and he’s been a great servant for Kerry and will continue to be into the future. I’m looking forward to being back in training on Tuesday night and I’ll have the bragging rights for a while anyway.”
Peter Crowley is the biggest injury concern for Kerry manager Jack O’Connor. Crowley injured his hamstring in Laune Rangers’ victory over Shannon Rangers on Saturday.
Meanwhile, Paul Galvin (chest infection), Tomás Ó Sé (back) and Marc Ó Se (shoulder) are all minor concerns for the management but look set to be fit for the second round of the All-Ireland qualifiers next month.