The first reference we have encountered of a club of this name was on Wednesday, July 17, 1872 when County Kerry entertained Valencia Cricket Club at the military barracks square in Ballymullen, Tralee. The visitors won by an innings, and the first efforts by the Tralee based side do not appear to have been very successful. Cricket was the foremost of the collective team sports at the time, and there were at different times clubs in Kenmare (The Bosthoons!), Sneem, Waterville, Cahersiveen, Milltown, Killarney, Killorglin, Listowel, Tarbert, Ballylongford, Causeway, Ballyheigue, Ardfert, Abbeyfeale and Newcastle West.
Valencia was well served, with the Anglo American C.C. also located on the island. County Kerry meandered through Tralee C.C. to Clohers C.C. (where the club played on the grounds of Clohers House) before returning to County Kerry again in 1885. The club had played at the Fair Green as well, but on completion of The Sportsfield in that year, County Kerry played there. In that year, the club also adopted the colours of green and gold. The ground was sold in 1903 after some troublesome years and it was purchased for the G.A.A. The cricket club continued to use the ground, however, as cricket was not on the list of banned sports at the time. In the 1920s there was another upsurge in interest in cricket and the Bourne Vincent family of Killarney presented a County Championship trophy. Its present whereabouts is unfortunately unknown.
The game appeared to have fizzled out terminally in the late 1940s when the Cable Company in Waterville played County Kerry for the last time, but a note in the newsletter of Tralee Rugby Club by Eric Lye in 1987 produced a number of people interested in playing. Some equipment was appropriated, bakers’ overalls appeared and the team played four games under the banner of The Barony of Truchanackmy Cricketers. The following year, the club, now again calling itself County Kerry, entered the Munster Minor League and Cup and shocked the established clubs by running out winners of both. In 1991, having shared the Minor League the previous year, the players decided to enter the Junior ranks and also took on the Munster Senior Cup for the first time. The following County Kerry won the Munster Senior Shield (a plate competition for the Senior Cup) and was beaten by Limerick in the final of the Junior Cup. This was rectified the following year when U.C.C. was beaten in the Junior Cup Final, and also went under in the Shield Final.
In 1994, County Kerry became a senior club; in 1995, the Shield was again brought home, but a decline had set in and in 1998 it was agreed to revert to junior status again. In 1993, a second Kerry club emerged in Listowel. The two clubs share a very healthy rivalry but are also extremely close.
In 2007 a new all-weather crease was put down and two nets with all-weather surfaces were also set up in the grounds of the Tralee Rugby Club. A bowling machine was purchased as well. These facilities will ensure that cricket can be played and practiced in Tralee for many years to come.
In 2013 the club moved to the Tralee Sports & Leisure Complex. The move is a temporary one, while development of a permanent ground progresses at the Spa, on the Fenit road.
Pat Gleasure, Gideon de Swardt, Stewart Kenny, Ms. Fionnuala Murphy, Ron Kimber, Garry O’Donnell, Eric Lye, Shay Livingstone, Mrs. Blanche Rutland, Charles Gullin, Joe Revington, Dr. John Halkett, Gordon Revington, Richard Rutland
Alam Morshed and Jonathan Boulding
Jonathan Boulding & Shafique
Monday & Wednesday 6:00pm to 8:30pm Youth
Tuesday & Thursday 6:00pm to 8:30pm Senior