Kildare 4-12 Kerry 1-17
Kildare's hurlers enjoyed a satisfying afternoon's work in their second ever outing at the new Naas GAA facility as they scored an opening round 4-12 to 1-17 Christy Ring Cup defeat of Kerry.
Morgan Lalor's side, disappointing in the National League, put down a marker for the new competition, which culminates in a Croke Park final on August 14, as Andy Quinn (2), Brendan Byrne and Joe Dempsey shared out the home side's goals.
Kildare led by a sole point - 1-07 to 1-06 - at the break, despite being backed by the wind. Quinn picked off his first goal on 21 minutes for a 1-04 to 0-05 lead.
Michael Conway though, immediately pointed for Kerry and an Eoin Sheehy goal (26 minutes), allied to the introduction of half-forward Shane Brick onto the field, kept the Kingdom in the hunt.
Quinn notched his second goal ten minutes into the second half, and although the accurate Conway kept Kerry's points tally ticking with 0-13 in all (0-11 from placed balls), two further netted efforts from Byrne (53) and Dempsey (64) pulled Kildare clear.