The Kerry Club Football Championship seems a bit confusing to those of us who are not from Kerry. Between teams amalgamating, towns dividing into different clubs, and divisional sides representing club teams, it takes a while to get your head around it all.
Whatever the format there is no disputing that it has provided some great clubs and some great players. Sportstalk tried to pull a few facts from the whole mess.
The championship is made up of divisional sides as well as clubs. If a divisional side wins then the best placed club represents Kerry in the All Ireland club series.
South Kerry are the current champions. They beat Killarney Legion after a replay in the final so Killarney Legion represented Kerry in the Munster club championship.
The trophy awarded is called the Bishop Moynihan Cup
First competed for in 1887 with Laune Rangers beating Killarney Crokes
There is a very even spit of winners – Austin Stacks and Luane Rangers both have 12 titles to their names, John Mitchells, Dr Crokes and South Kerry have 10, Tralee Mitchells have won 9 titles.
Between Tralee John Mitchells, John Mitchells (not to be confused with Tralee John Mitchells), Austin Stacks and Kerins O’Rahilly’s, the Bishop Moynihan Cup has spent the winter in Tralee 37 times.
Divisional side East Kerry won the first ever All Ireland club title in 1971. Austin Stacks won in 1976, Castleisland Desmonds in 1985, Dr. Crokes in 1992 and Luane Rangers were the last Kerry team to win it back in 1996. An Ghaeltact reached the final in 2004, as did Dr Crokes in 2007.
Dr Crokes have won six Munster senior club titles.
Before 1927 only one team represented Tralee in the Kerry Senior Football County Championship and they were Tralee John Mitchels. As this team was so successful the Kerry County Board requested that it should be divided into three individual teams representing, Boherbee, Rock St. and Strand St, this is where the John Mitchels, Austin Stacks and Kerins O’Rahilly’s clubs came from.
There is also a Tralee Divisional team. This team won three senior titles in a row – 1925, 1926, 1927. Today it only fields teams at under 14 and under 16. There is a St Brendan’s divisional side that John Mitchells players can play with at senior level. We’re sure it makes sense to Kerry people!