The winners, champions in 2004, 2005, 2006 and 2009, held too many aces for a gallant but limited East Kerry outfit.
Outstanding performances from Kerry county players Declan O’Sullivan, Bryan Sheehan and until a knee injury forced him off, Killian Young, laid the foundation for South Kerry’s nine-point victory. Another player to catch the eye was St Marys’ Paul O’Donoghue who chipped in with 1-2.
East Kerry really struggled to score against a tight-marking South Kerry defence with Derry Ahern the only starting forward to score from play over the hour.
South Kerry manager Paul Murphy was satisfied with his team’s performance. “We were happy with our attitude to the game and we were happy with our workrate,” he said.
“That was our first time playing together as a team and it’s hard to expect a lot from that, but I was very pleased with the way it went.”
Turning to Killian Young, the South Kerry boss said while the county player struggled before coming off, there was little to be concerned about.
“He took a slight knock to his knee, but I don’t think that it’s that bad,” Murphy stated.
South Kerry took command of the game from the off courtesy of an Aidan Walsh point and a Bryan Sheehan free.
East Kerry dragged themselves back into contention through two Liam Murphy frees, but from there on South Kerry dominated proceedings.
Bryan Sheehan (two), Ian Galvin and Killian Young scored points to a sole Derry Ahern reply before Ian Galvin’s flick to the in-rushing Barry O’Dwyer allowed the Waterville player to set Declan O’Sullivan up for his side’s first goal.
East Kerry did hit back through Liam Murphy (free), Fintan Coffey and DJ O’Connor (free) to leave themselves 1-7 to 0-7 in arrears after 24 minutes. However, points from Declan O’Sullivan (two), Paul O’Donoghue, interspersed with a solitary East Kerry reply left the scoreline 1-10 to 0-8 at the break in favour of South Kerry.
After the break South Kerry notched three points on the trot to extend their lead to 1-13 to 0-8 by the 36th minute – Niall Fitzgerald, Paul O’Donoghue and Declan O’Sullivan doing the needful.
Aidan Walsh, Declan O’Sullivan increased South Kerry advantage to 1-15 to 0-10 by the 50th minute, before Paul O’Donoghue lashed home South Kerry’s second goal.
Corner back Mike ‘Blondie’ Murphy did manage to snaffle a consolation goal for East Kerry but two further South Kerry points against one for East Kerry copper-fastened a straight-forward win for the Iveragh Peninsula side.
SOUTH KERRY: D Horgan (St Mary’s); Dominic O’Sullivan (Dromid Pearses), K O’Dwyer (Waterville), P O’Sullivan (Valentia); G Gibson (Waterville), K Young (Renard) (0-1), N Fitzgerald (Waterville) (0-1); B Sheehan (St Mary’s (0-4, 0-3 frees), T Curran (Dromid Pearses); P O’Donoghue (1-2), Denis Daly (St Mary’s), A Walsh (St Mary’s) (0-3); B O’Dwyer (Waterville) (0-1), Declan O’Sullivan (Dromid Pearses) (1-4), I Galvin (Derrynane) (0-1).
Subs: B Walsh (Skellig Rangers) for K Young (21), S Cournane (St Mary’s) for B O’Dwyer (54), Daniel Daly (St Mary’s) for I Galvin (54), B O’Sullivan (renard) for Denis Daly (59).
EAST KERRY: C Myers (Fossa); M Culloty (Glenflesk), J Sheahan (Gneeveguilla), M Murphy (Gneeveguilla) (1-0); J O’Mahony (Firies), P O’Connor (Gneeveguilla), J Sherwood (Firies); F Coffey (Fossa) (0-2), M O’Donoghue (Spa); D Ahern (Listry) (0-1), JP Brosnan (Gneeveguilla), L Murphy (Gneeveguilla) (0-6 frees); DJ O’Connor (Gneeveguilla) (0-1 free), G O’Sullivan (Listry), J O’Donoghue (Glenflesk).
Subs: D Wrenn (Listry) for M Culloty (30), S Foley (Firies) (0-1) for G O’Sullivan (35), M Daly (Firies) for DJ O’Connor (Gneeveguilla) (37), P O’Sullivan (Gneeveguilla) for J O’Donoghue (59).
Referee: D Sayers (Austin Stacks).