Flourishing under the reign of Stephen Baxter, the Hatchetmen
have enjoyed a period of sustained success, with Coates and Co getting their hands on every big trophy going - the Setanta Cup, the Irish Cup, the League Cup and the Co Antrim Shield - with the very notable exception of one.
He suffered the dreaded double leg break of the tibia and fibula in 2008 which kept him sidelined for the remainder of that year, while his Irish League career got off to an inauspicious start when the Hatchetmen
were relegated in his breakthrough season.
But the Oranges are not the only brutes - this has been a World Cup for hatchetmen
rather than magic men.
CRUSADERS assistant manager Jeff Spiers reckons the Hatchetmen
can create history this week.
take on Lithuanian outfit FK Ekranas in the Europa League first preliminary round first-leg at Seaview on Thursday night and the skipper is hopeful of a season to remember.
are littered with household Irish League names, the likes of Gary McCutcheon, Chris Morrow, Paul Leeman and Colin Coates, and reigned supreme as all-Ireland Setanta Cup champions just two years ago.
finished the game with nine men when Chris Morrow saw red for a late lunge on Philip Lowry.
In truth however, it could be argued that a Star victory against the Hatchetmen
is even more far-fetched than Newington's famous win against Glentoran at the Oval.
Paul Heatley gave the Hatchetmen
an early lead before Darren King was dismissed for the home side.
Saturday's 0-0 draw at Glentoran may have seen them toppled from the summit, but sitting just two points adrift of league leaders Linfield, the Hatchetmen
remain perfectly poised to land a first Gibson Cup since 1998.
Scottish hitman Gary McCutcheon bagged a brace for the Hatchetmen
either side of strikes from Jordan Owens and the impressive Paul Heatley, while Chris Morrow had an early penalty saved by Graeme McKibben.
WRECKING CRUES Hatchetmen
beat Linfield 2-0 at Seaview back in August and Blues want revenge