McElhatton one of Cookstown’s shining lights

By Niall Gartland

MICHAEL McElhatton has been one of the shining lights in Holy Trinity’s run to Sunday’s MacRory Cup final, but he knows they’ll get nothing easy in their third match of the campaign against a Tyrone school.

Holy Trinity came up against a formidable St Patrick’s, Dungannon team twice, shading an enthralling semi-final encounter at Carrickmore to avenge their group stage defeat.

Now they take on Omagh CBS in the MacRory final, and ace forward McElhatton recognises that it adds a little extra spice to proceedings.

“It’s another Tyrone derby and we know we’ll have to play to our potential to get over the line on the day, it’s a massive day for us.”

The Cookstown native continued: “We played the Academy twice and thankfully we came out on the end of the result the second day out.

“It was an interesting one, there were two Cookstown men on the sideline, and another Cookstown fella marking me, we’d a great battle. There was a huge crowd for that match in Carrickmore, there was over 3,000 people, but thankfully we played the game and not the occasion.”

McElhatton has tasted success since the very beginning of his time at Holy Trinity College, winning the provincial title at ‘B’ level in first year. The school won the MacLarnon Cup in 2018, and since then they have competed at MacRory level.

It’s been a real success story for all involved and it would be immensely gratifying to finish the job this weekend, especially after the disappointment of losing last year’s final to St Mary’s, Magherafelt, a game McElhatton lined out in.

“St Mary’s got a very quick start that day and caught us off guard. It meant we were always trying to claw the game back but they were able to hold onto their advantage.”

Asked if a lack of experience was a factor, he said: “I wouldn’t say so because a lot of our boys have played county minors. I think the start just killed us.

“A lot of our boys know what it’s like to get beat in a MacRory final so we really want to avoid that feeling again.”

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