The meeting of three-in-row-chasing East Kerry and Austin Stacks was the tie of the opening round of the Garveys SuperValu Kerry SFC as the draw was made at Austin Stack Park on Monday evening.
East Kerry are backboned by the Clifford brothers, David and Paudie, along with Paul Murphy and Shane Ryan but will be minus 10 players from Spa who were promoted to senior for this year. However, they will have players from Kilcummin at their disposal, including Paul O’Shea and Kevin McCarthy.
Stacks, who are in the club championship semi-final, are a formidable outfit with former Kerry players Kieran Donaghy and Brendan O’Sullivan in their ranks.
Spa return to the SFC for the first time in 10 years and they face a derby against Killarney Legion who are struggling in the senior club championship under Stephen Stack, who was a recent candidate for the Kerry senior manager post.
Dr Crokes will be favourites to beat West Kerry but Annascaul and An Ghaeltacht are both doing well in their club championships.
St Brendan's — powered by Jack Barry and Diarmuid O’Connor and who only narrowly lost to East Kerry over the past two years — face Kenmare Shamrocks, while last year’s beaten finalists Mid Kerry will play a Dingle side powered by the Geaney clan.
Another heavyweight clash will see St Kieran’s face Kerins O’Rahilly’s and with the added pressure that the SFC is knockout this year so no losers round awaits the beaten side.
(1) Spa v Killarney Legion
(2) Templenoe v Shannon Rangers
(3) Feale Rangers v South Kerry
(4) West Kerry v Dr Crokes
(5) Austin Stacks v East Kerry
(6) Kenmare Shamrocks v St Brendans
(7) Dingle v Mid Kerry
(8) St Kieran’s v Kerins O’Rahilly’s
Games will be played as double-headers at Fitzgerald Stadium and Austin Stack Park over the weekend of October 30 and 31.
Kilmurry-Ibrickane v Kilmihil
St Joseph’s Miltown-Malbay v St Breckan’s
St Joseph’s Doora-Barefield v Lissycasey
Éire Óg Ennis v Ennistymon