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Tyrone teams to savour Ulster success before eyeing more joy

By John Campbell

Self-sacrifice has been the order of the day for the past 11 months as the players of Pomeroy and Rock applied themselves fully to the task of chasing Championship success even though flamboyant centenary celebrations swirled around them.

The two Tyrone clubs had drafted elaborate ton-up celebration itineraries but the players took a back seat as the quest for county and Ulster glory was pursued vigorously.

And now that both clubs have achieved their respective provincial honours - Pomeroy are the new intermediate champions while Rock have been crowned junior kingpins - the players will be afforded the chance to let their hair down before focusing on the All-Ireland Club series.

Pomeroy manager Mark Harte is fulsome in his praise of the players who have brought so much success to the club and is now suggesting that they should party in style.

"The boys are entitled to have a party now. In this the club's centenary year they have really put their shoulders to the wheel," maintained schoolteacher Harte.

"We didn't feel pressures from within the club and we just wanted to prepare 30 players to play Championship and league football. These lads have dedicated themselves for the full calendar year.

"I'm just delighted that we have got over the line and won the Ulster title."

And Rock boss Adrian Nugent, who watched his side make history by winning a third Ulster junior title, has eulogised the desire his players have shown since the start of a centenary season which could have afforded distractions but yet the whole focus remained firmly on bringing success to the club.

"The players' desire has been palpable from the outset and it was never better highlighted than in our win over Blackhill in Sunday's Ulster final," stated Nugent.

"There was real hunger and a desire to leave everything out there.

"I could not have asked for more from the players in terms of commitment."

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