We’ll be squaring up to the Kerrymen again on Sunday and, by sifting through the results archive, I can confirm that this weekend’s match with them will be the 56th time we’ll have met them in a competitive fixture, that it’ll be the 36th time we’ll have clashed in the league and the 7th time that we’ll have done so at McHale Park (we did meet another time in Castlebar back in the Twenties but McHale Park wasn’t there at that stage).
It’s over a hundred years since we first came up against them – our first meeting was an All-Ireland semi-final played in Limerick in February 1909 – and our full record over the 55 league and championship games we’ve had with them is one of 17 wins, 5 draws and 33 losses. We’ve clashed frequently enough in the championship as well as the league and while our record against them in the latter is far better than in the former, we have the odd few good memories against them there as well.
Our recent league record against them is good too: since that ghastly 2006 All-Ireland defeat we’ve met them four times in Division One of the NFL where we’ve won on three occasions (including last year down in Tralee) and lost just the once. The last time we encountered them at McHale Park – in February 2008 – we beat them by a single point on a day that became almost infamous due to the Spoongate affair. A similar result on Sunday – whatever about flying cucharas – wouldn’t go amiss.
Here then, for the record like, is our complete record in the league and championship against the Kingdom: