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John Doyle night

A special night to honour a very special player

What will be a very special and emotion-charged night of quality sporting entertainment is being lined-up to honour the memory of one of the greatest soccer players to ever play the game in Kerry.

10 years have now elapsed since the passing of Killarney Celtic FC and Kerry Oscar Traynor Cup legend John Doyle who fought a long battle with serious illness with great bravery and spirit.

To mark the landmark anniversary, a major sporting event has been arranged with his beloved Killarney Celtic taking on the might of League of Ireland side Kerry FC with all proceeds from the glamour tie going to Comfort for Chemo Kerry.

It will be an auspicious and exciting occasion with Billy Dennehy’s popular side taking on the domestic kingpins of Kerry soccer with Celtic currently on a high after completing an unprecedented five Kerry league and cup doubles in a row.
Several of the marquee names in Kerry soccer will take to the field at Celtic Park in Killarney on Wednesday, July 26 with the kick-off timed for 7.30pm.

The game will be played on the night after John’s 10th anniversary and, poignantly, the action will take place in front of the John Doyle Stand which the club dedicated to the memory of one of the greatest and most versatile players to ever lace a pair of boots.

A solid all-round performer, John was also a very accomplished Gaelic footballer with Spa and he won an All-Ireland Hogan Cup medal with St Brendan’s College in 1992.

The tie has all the ingredients required to make it a classic with two finely-tuned attacking teams, featuring many of the best players in the game in Kerry, going head-to-head in memory of a man who served his town and county with passion, skill and determination and exhibited great sportsmanship at all times.

Tickets for the big game are priced at €10 and €5 for under 16s and all proceeds will go to Comfort for Chemo Kerry which is a cause very close to the hearts of all those who have embarked on cancer journeys.

There will be a novel auction at half-time and the star lots will include gear donated by Kerry GAA stars David and Paudie Clifford – both also accomplished soccer players – a Kerry jersey signed and donated by the great Colm Cooper, a jersey donated by former Manchester United star and current Wrexham goalkeeper Ben Foster and other wonderful items.

Guests of honour at the game will be John’s wife, Lynda, daughter Ruth and members of the extended Doyle family as well as many former team-mates and friends who remember a very fine gentleman and a brilliant sportsman.

The memorial game, sponsored by Killarney Kenmare and Caherciveen Credit Union, the Sheehan Group and Utiliity Plus, is being organised by a committee involving John’s great friends, spearheaded by Karl McMahon, and including Killarney Celtic Chairman Tim Jones and club stalwarts Niall O’Callaghan, Noel Brosnan and Tom Meehan.

“This will be a fantastic occasion to remember a fantastic guy and we’re all looking forward to it so much as it should attract a capacity crowd for a great cause,” said Karl McMahon.

“We are very grateful to Billy Dennehy and Kerry FC for taking time out from their first year in the League of Ireland, and in the middle of a hectic season, to facilitate this game,” he added.

Tickets are available from Tim Jones Butchers, the Fáilte Hotel, Killarney Credit Union and several other outlets as well as from any of the organising committee.