Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Great tip that Glen, I did not know that.

Brad :)
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Neeld no scapegoat for Dons' woes: Worsfold
ESSENDON coach John Worsfold has had to defend his position at the club after denying Mark Neeld has been made a scapegoat for the Bombers' poor start to the season.

The Bombers' decision to re-sign Worsfold for two more years after round one this year, a deal that would tie him to the club until the end of 2020, has come under scrutiny after his side's 2-6 beginning to the year.

Further heat has come on his role after the sudden departure of game performance manager Mark Neeld this week, with the Bombers making that position redundant.

Asked if he felt his own job was safe in the wake of the shock exit of Neeld, Worsfold said everyone at Essendon was on the same page.

"I'm really confident with my communication with the board and [chief executive] Xavier (Campbell) at this footy club that we're not happy with where we're at, but we're on a clear pathway to where we want to get to," Worsfold said.

"We've all got clear roles to play in achieving that, so I see a club that's pretty strongly aligned and focused on doing the hard work to get to where we want to get to."

A prickly Worsfold also denied reports of communication problems inside the Bombers' coaching box and clarified Neeld's role at the club, saying the former Melbourne coach did not have ultimate say over Essendon's game style and strategy.

He said Neeld had not worn all the blame for Essendon's disastrous start to a season they expected to go much better after the recruitment of three key players last year and a finals appearance in 2017.

"No, I don't think so. I worked really closely with Mark and enjoyed working with him. He's got a huge amount to offer both in football administration or the general business world with his character," he said.

"I can't control perceptions of other people and I can't control how people want to write things. People will put things in a context to angle it the way they wanted, so I'm fully supportive of Mark's decision.

"I consider him a friend and I'm rapt with everything he's done to support me in my time at the Essendon Football Club and I'll continue to support him in [whatever] pathway he goes."

After Saturday's defeat to the previously winless Carlton, Worsfold lamented the Bombers' lack of a 'trademark' in their football so far this season.

It is a sentiment that has been echoed by All Australian midfielder and Bombers' vice-captain Zach Merrett, who said they are playing without a "ruthless and hard" streak.

Worsfold said finding that style had to driven by the players. "In the history of all the great teams I've ever read about or been a part of, the great teams are player-led and the good teams are coach led. That's just the way it is, and we want to be a great team," he said.

Essendon could turn to some new faces after four straight defeats, with high-profile recruit Jake Stringer no certainty to face the Cats on Saturday.

Worsfold said the former Bulldog would "possibly" play. "He's in line for selection," he said.
http://www.afl.com.au/news/2018-05-16/neeld-no-scapegoat-for-dons-woes-worsfold
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Essendon to unveil two new baby Bombers
ESSENDON will have two new faces in Saturday's clash with Geelong, with Jordan Ridley and Dylan Clarke confirmed to make their debuts.

The pair have been in impressive form at VFL level, with Clarke leading the league for disposals so far this season (164 from five games at an average of 33).

Like his brother, hard-running Roos midfielder Ryan, Clarke has a strong engine and is confident around the ball. Ridley is an attacking, taller half-back with excellent foot skills.

Both joined Essendon via the 2016 NAB AFL Draft – Ridley at pick 22 and Clarke at 63 – and they will share their debut at the MCG against the Cats.

"I think we both went our own way a bit in terms of just putting our heads down and getting the work done, so I think we should both be pretty proud of how we’ve been playing," Clarke said.

"To get rewarded on me and Rids' form in the VFL is really positive, so we both feel pretty good at the moment and we’re hoping to have a good impact on Saturday."

Ridley has had to come back from some injury setbacks in his first season-and-a-half at the club and says he enters the game with confidence.

"It's been a little bit frustrating the last few weeks being an emergency a few times, but it’s finally good to break through," he said.

The Bombers are expected to make a several changes after a run of four straight losses, which included last week's poor performance against the previously winless Carlton.

Key defender Michael Hurley is already a confirmed out after straining his hamstring.
http://www.afl.com.au/news/2018-05-16/two-new-dons-set-for-afl-debut
:)
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Essendon Team selection: Rd 9
Essendon coach John Worsfold has stuck to his word and made five changes to his side to face Geelong in the Country Game on Saturday.

A young and exciting team has been named with two debutants, Dylan Clarke and Jordan Ridley, among the inclusions.

Clarke has been a ball-magnet in the VFL this year, leading the league for disposals (with 164 from five games) and hard-ball gets (33), while currently placing second for contested possessions (79) and third for tackles (43).

Worsfold said he was “rapt” to unleash the midfielder and said he would get plenty of opportunities through the middle of the MCG.

“Dylan’s form’s been outstanding, his attitude since he arrived at the footy club has set a real example for all the young players,” Worsfold said on Thursday.

“And the rewards are there for him because of the hard work he’s done and obviously because of his great form.

“He’ll definitely get a fair bit of time in the midfield and last year he spent a fair bit of time forward as well, so he’ll rotate through there.”

Ridley has also impressed this year as a classy intercept defender and Worsfold said he has been impressed with the 19-year-old’s form and persistence.

“Jordan we think is a highly talented player that’s going to be a really good player for the Essendon Football Club.

“He’s had a couple of serious injuries that have probably held him back so far, but his attitude to work through them both last year and then through the pre-season this year was first-rate.

“His attitude’s great, he’s got a lot of talent and he’s now in very good form, so he’s ready for his opportunity.”

Worsfold said while he is likely to spend most of his debut in defence, the club expects Ridley to play a variety of roles in the future.

“He’ll play mainly in the back half, but we think in the long term he’s going to be a very versatile player for us that can go up onto the wing and play forward for periods,” he said.

Fellow young gun Matt Guelfi has been recalled after two weeks out of the senior side. The West Australian was terrific in his first three matches before being rested for the side’s clash with Hawthorn in round seven.

Worsfold said he had been impressed by Guelfi’s start to his career and only brought him out of the side because he’d played the 20-year-old in three games in 11 days.

“Matt really hasn’t put a foot wrong, we know the games that he came in and played around ANZAC Day he was a really solid performer for us.

“We felt that was a big workload for him playing a lot of games in a short number of days, so he’s freshened up and had a game in the VFL and (is) ready for his next run at it.”

Kyle Langford has been rewarded for his strong form in the VFL for his third senior match of the season, while experienced defender Matt Dea will also take the field after proving he has overcome a leg injury.

Worsfold said Dea had only come out of the side due to injury and deserved a recall, while he was impressed by Langford’s consistency.

“Langers has been in good form all year and was in the side for a couple of weeks and has gone out, but he’s been knocking on the door for a number of weeks so he’s in good form (and) ready to go.”

Young on-baller Kobe Mutch has been rested for the battle against the Cats, while Michael Hurley will watch from the sidelines as he recovers from a hamstring strain.

David Myers joins him off the field after failing to fully recover from hip soreness following last week’s loss to Carlton.

Midfielder Darcy Parish and small defender Ben McNiece have been omitted from the side and Worsfold revealed the response he is seeking from the pair.

“(We want Darcy) to find a lot of the footy, work hard and really enjoy probably a bit more midfield time than he’s been able to generate in the senior team.

“Benny McNiece, his form’s been solid, we feel like Matty Dea gives us a bit more size in the back half this week.

“So (we want) Ben just to keep on playing really good footy and building both the attacking side of his game probably more so, but defending really hard.

FINAL TEAM:

B – Hooker, Ridley, Baguley

HB – Saad, Ambrose, Heppell

C – Goddard, Guelfi, McKenna

HF – Clarke, Stewart, McDonald-Tipungwuti

F – Langford, McKernan, Fantasia

R – Bellchambers, Zaharakis, Smith

I/C – Stringer, Laverde, Z. Merrett, Dea

Emergencies – Parish, J. Merrett, Long, McNiece


IN – Clarke, Ridley, Guelfi, Langford, Dea

OUT – Hurley, Parish, Mutch, Myers, McNiece
http://www.essendonfc.com.au/news/2018-05-17/team-selection-rd-9
I see that the last remaining top up player has made it back into the senior side - Matt Dea.
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Bombers back on target against Cats
THIS was what Essendon's shiny new 2018 model was supposed to look like.

Blistering ball movement, defence-splintering kicks, suffocating pressure, a big man clunking marks in attack – and a commanding win over a fellow finals aspirant.

It may have come just in time to rescue a season many wrote off in the wake of last week's loss to a then-winless Carlton and the subsequent departure of strategy coach Mark Neeld.

The Bombers put a hellish week behind them – and showed there is still a pulse at Tullamarine – with a 12.12 (84) to 7.8 (50) demolition of an impossible-to-read Geelong at the MCG on Saturday.

And all with bookends Joe Daniher and Michael Hurley, 2016 No.1 draft pick Andy McGrath and a handful of other regular contributors on the sidelines.

They even won a third quarter for the first time this year despite kicking five consecutive behinds at one stage.

"I know they've got that performance in them. I know that we're still learning a lot about each other and our roles," coach John Worsfold told reporters post-match.

"They had a really good week on the track around where we believed we could perform better together, our understanding.

"Full credit to them for the way they talked and worked through that."

The damage was done in a devastating five-goal-to-none start – three to Shaun McKernan – although the Cats steadied from that early blow with a pair of majors leading into quarter-time.

But one moment just before the first break summed up Essendon's desire and denied Geelong a third goal that had the potential to break Bomber hearts.

An errant Dyson Heppell handball gifted the Cats possession inside their forward 50 and they surged forward to Gary Ablett in the pocket, only for Zach Merrett to bury him in a bruising tackle.

Merrett (32 disposals, six tackles, six clearances) saved a goal earlier in the term in similar circumstances when he wrapped up Patrick Dangerfield.

The All Australian midfielder is one of many who has underperformed this season in the face of increased opposition attention, but sang a different tune on Saturday.

Those two Geelong six-pointers were its last until a Dangerfield long bomb almost 13-and-a-half minutes into the third term.

There were four more Essendon goals in between, including three in a six-minute burst to kick off the second term – the third of them to one of the AFL's great survivors, ex-Crow McKernan.

Jake Stringer (19, seven tackles) was close to being dumped to the VFL after the Blues defeat, but was an instigator in the Bombers' bright start in a roaming role.

His ability to direct the ball to ground in a one-versus-two against Jack Henry and Zach Tuohy to set up a McKernan soccer goal was tremendous.

It was the Bombers' highlight-reel announcement they were playing as one.

Brendon Goddard told media mid-week that tackling was just one indicator of effort, but Essendon's 36-21 edge in that department in the opening quarter was noteworthy.

Devon Smith, another of the recruits, led the way again with five tackles to quarter-time (10 for the day) and was one of a whopping six Bombers with at least three by then.

Heppell (28), who apologised on behalf of the club's senior group to the young brigade for a lack of leadership in the first eight rounds, also set the tone with an excellent beginning.

But there was no shortage of Essendon winners.

Cale Hooker (21, 11 marks) was an enormous presence in defence with his strong hands, Jordan Ridley (25) made a wonderfully-composed debut and David Zaharakis (33, six tackles) was a relentless ball-winner.

The coaching staff's move to send usual defender Mark Baguley forward was a success and Anthony McDonald-Tipungwuti poured on the pressure alongside him.

As for Chris Scott's Cats, they struggled to find a way forward with another loss in the clearances (36-32) and their uncontested game shutdown.

Scott conceded his side was "obliterated" around the ball.

"Our performance, in some ways, was inexplicable. We didn't execute any of the things we planned going in," Geelong's coach said.

"The other side of that – it's always ungracious to talk too much in these sorts of situations about how poorly we used the ball and fumbled and were just beaten in the contest, without acknowledging how good the opposition were.

"There's no doubt they beat us in virtually every facet of the game … we just didn't respond well enough and a lot of the plans we had going into the game needed to be thrown out the window to an extent.

"We tried a number of things and probably with the exception of (Mark) Blicavs in the ruck, none of them worked."

Joel Selwood (30) and Mitch Duncan (26) toiled away in the middle and Dangerfield (27, six clearances) did, too, but lacked his usual polish and quality decision-making, and Hawkins battled hard with little supply.

MEDICAL ROOM
Essendon: The Bombers, in another positive, came through the game unscathed. Coach John Worsfold said Michael Hurley, Andy McGrath and David Myers all trained "pretty well" on Saturday morning and were a chance to return next week.

Geelong: James Parsons had some treatment on his hip/groin region in the third quarter, but returned to the field and played out the match. Esava Ratugolea, Scott Selwood, Brandan Parfitt and Lachie Fogarty could all be available for selection in round 10, according to Cats coach Chris Scott.

NEXT UP
Essendon heads to Spotless Stadium on Saturday night to take on Greater Western Sydney in a pivotal match for both sides' season. The Cats will try to return to the winner's circle when they host Carlton in Geelong on the same night.

ESSENDON 5.2 9.5 10.11 12.12 (84)
GEELONG 2.2 2.3 3.5 7.8 (50)

GOALS
Essendon: McKernan 4, Fantasia 2, Heppell, Stringer, Guelfi, McKenna, Baguley, Stewart
Geelong: Hawkins 3, Dangerfield 2, J.Selwood, Crameri

BEST
Essendon: Merrett, Hooker, McKernan, Heppell, McDonald-Tipungwuti, Stringer, Fantasia, Ridley
Geelong: J.Selwood, Stewart, Blicavs, Crameri, Duncan

INJURIES
Essendon: Nil
Geelong: Nil

Reports: Nil

Umpires: Schmitt, Whetton, Hay

Official crowd: 50,228 at the MCG
http://www.afl.com.au/news/2018-05-19/match-report-essendon-v-geelong
Top performance to win like this after such a torrid week. Other clubs need to take a leaf out of their book :!:
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Woosha in no mood to celebrate victory
AN INSPIRED Essendon broke its run of four successive losses and put a tumultuous off-field week behind it to post a 34-point win against Geelong on Saturday but the result wasn't always reflected in coach John Worsfold's post-match demeanour.

After game performance coach Mark Neeld's position was made redundant on Monday and Mark Baguley was involved in a sledging scandal with Carlton stopper Jed Lamb, it seemed victory would have provided welcome respite for the Bombers.

Worsfold was in a combative mood at his midweek press conference on Thursday and while that wouldn't be a completely appropriate way to describe his manner in the aftermath of the contest with Geelong, he was often short.

A reporter asked Worsfold if he felt relief after a difficult period.

"No," Worsfold said.

Reporter: No relief?

"No."

Reporter: What is the overwhelming emotion?

"Focus on going forward and getting where we want to get to."

His side's willingness to work impressed the coach.

"I'm pretty happy. Rapt," Worsfold said.

"What pleased me the most? Effort.

"The effort to commit to each other about the way they wanted to perform as a unit."

Worsfold spoke after last week's loss to the Blues about the players needing to figure out what they stand for.

He was asked whether his players had those conversations.

"They certainly did."

Reporter: Can you tell us what was said?

"Nope."

Reporter: Keeping it in house?

"Yep, in house."

Worsfold was questioned about how the coaching box functioned, a relevant question considering Neeld has departed.

"There was no real change."

Reporter: There was an absentee.

"Yep."

Reporter: So that would have changed things?

"Other people stepped up and played a bit of that role but overall, not too much changed," Worsfold said.

"We've still got a lot of work to do there."

However, there is time to be satisfied.

"They (players) can enjoy the win. They should enjoy the win and get back to work knowing that they've shown each other," Worsfold said.

"Again, we've had three games where we've seen glimpses of what we can do. We still haven't put it all together. We've got a lot of work to do.

"It's early in the season so we'll knuckle down and keep doing the work."

Shaun McKernan burst out of the blocks and finished with four goals, providing plenty of firepower as Joe Daniher is sidelined with osteitis pubis.

"Shaun had his best pre-season that I've seen him have and I think if you asked him, it was probably his best pre-season he's ever had," Worsfold said.

"He set a real benchmark in terms of his work ethic through the pre-season and then that form has carried through.

"He's had to wait for his opportunities, but we knew he was going to be able to perform well when they came, because of the physical position or fitness that he's got himself to."

Greater Western Sydney looms next Saturday night at Spotless Stadium. Michael Hurley (hamstring), Andy McGrath (calf) and David Myers (hip) all trained on Saturday morning and could return to face the Giants.

Despite the impressive performance, the Bombers aren't getting carried away, as their coach pointed out, perhaps with tongue planted in cheek.

"We're keeping a lid on it. We don't want to be premiership favourites just yet.
http://www.afl.com.au/news/2018-05-19/john-worsfold-post-match
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Essendons' 19 men on the field drama
AT THREE-QUARTER time on Saturday, Essendon fans were relaxed, with a 10.11 (71) to 3.5 (23) lead over an out-of-sorts Geelong seemingly enough for a much-needed victory.

Then, just seconds before the siren sounded to start the last term, Mark Baguley sprinted flat-out from the half-forward line towards the Essendon interchange bench.

It wasn't a last-minute change of personnel. The Bombers had 19 men on the field.

Some Geelong defenders, suddenly aware of the possibility that Essendon might have its score annulled, tried to signal to the field umpire, but fortunately for the Dons Baguley made it to the sanctuary of the boundary line before the umpire bounced the ball.

Had 19 men been on the field, and Geelong captain Joel Selwood called for a player count, Essendon's score would have been wiped out, giving the Cats a 23-point lead at the last change - and Bombers supporters another reason to believe the 2018 season is cursed.

And think of Baguley, who had endured a week in which his on-field confrontation with Carlton's Jed Lamb in round eight had been prime media fodder.

Had a mistake that might get an under-12 into trouble with the coach cost under-siege John Worsfold a crucial win, the tough Bomber's future prospects might have been as bleak as Essendon's empty scoreline.

AFL rules of the game read:

5.5.3 Players Exceeding Permitted Number

Where a Team has more than the permitted number of Players on the Playing Surface, the following shall apply:

(a) a field Umpire shall award a Free Kick to the captain or acting captain of the opposing Team, which shall be taken at the Centre Circle or where play was stopped, whichever is the greater penalty against the offending Team;

(b) a 50-Metre Penalty shall then be imposed from the position where the Free Kick was awarded; and

(c) the Team shall lose all points which it has scored in the Match up to the time of the count.
http://www.afl.com.au/news/2018-05-20/watch-dons-19-men-on-the-field-drama
I had thought that only (a) & (b) applied now & that (c) had been removed but apparently that is not the case. :)
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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I am a bit worried that James Hird may not have made it to the MCG last Saturday to see the win over the Cats:

James Hird's car stolen during overnight robbery at Toorak home.


James Hird's car has been stolen after intruders broke into his Toorak home, in Melbourne's south-east, overnight.

Police say the robbery took place between midnight and 1:30am while the former Essendon coach and his family were at home, but they were not hurt.

A silver Audi Q7 station wagon, registration XCA-676, was stolen.

Police also believe electronics were taken from the home.

"Stonnington Crime Investigation Unit detectives are investigating the circumstances surrounding an aggravated burglary in Toorak overnight," a Victoria Police statement said.

"The occupants, who were home at the time, were not disturbed during the incident."

The former Brownlow medallist was a central figure in the Essendon Football Club's supplements saga that engulfed the team from 2013.
https://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-05-18/james-hird-victim-of-home-invasion/9776326
So Stampboarders please keep an eye out for his car. We can't have him back on the bicycle, he might fall off again.

Please don't follow this car, it is not the stolen car:

Image

Image


:roll:
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Positive attitude the key for luckless Bomber
SHAUN McKernan is used to being delivered bad news. For most of the marking forward and pinch-hitting ruckman's career, the 27-year-old has been searching, unsuccessfully, for a permanent position at AFL level.

In his 10 seasons in the system, McKernan has managed 10 or more games just once – in 2011 when he played 16 games for Adelaide. Now into his fourth season at Essendon, McKernan has played 20 games for the Bombers.

He has been on one-year contracts for all of his time at Essendon, and a couple of years before that at the Crows, and three of his seasons at the Bombers have seen him start on the rookie list. Every game McKernan has played has been hard-earned.

It's why he maintained the right attitude at the start of this year, when his strong VFL form wasn't rewarded with senior selection until round eight against Carlton and coach John Worsfold would have to let McKernan know he had missed out.

"Towards the end of that six-week block I'd walk into his office and he'd sort of have a laugh or smile on his face because he knew he had to tell me the same thing as the week before. We'd have a joke about it, because there was nothing else I could really do. I had to keep playing well and doing what I was doing," he told AFL.com.au.

"He kept saying to me 'I wish I had something else for you, but keep doing what you're doing and when an opportunity comes you have to be ready to take it'. I had to be in the right mindset when the opportunity was there so I couldn't let not getting picked drag me down."

The opportunity finally arose, when Joe Daniher was ruled out for at least a month with osteitis pubis. McKernan's turn came, and he started with two goals and eight marks against Carlton and backed it up with a career-best four goals in last week's win over Geelong.

McKernan booted three in the first term and finished with 16 disposals. He could have had a couple more goals to his name as well after booting four behinds, but it was a dominant display close to goal. He starred for Essendon late in 2015 as a ruckman but says last week was his best game for the club as a forward.

"I don't want to just base my game around goals and kicks – I know there's other things in my game that I have to do for the team like competing long down the line and bringing the ball to ground," he said. "That's what I've been basing my game on."

McKernan doesn't know how Essendon's forward set-up could work once Daniher does return – unlikely to be before Essendon's round 13 bye – and isn't getting stressed thinking about it.

"I can't start looking into the future because that's when you start playing mind games with yourself," he said.

A change in the rookie rules for this year, which essentially allowed rookies to be elevated at any stage of the season without waiting for another player to be placed on the injury list, meant McKernan headed into 2018 with more hope of breaking into Essendon's line-up.

A chat about his goals and aims for the year with older brother Corey, who played 237 games for the Kangaroos and Carlton, including North's 1996 and '99 premierships, also helped.

"He's given me tips every now and then, but we sat down in pre-season and worked out a few things and even before I came into the AFL side he'd always ask me how I'm going," McKernan said.

"The past two weeks he's been good with his feedback. It's pretty handy to have someone like that as your brother but he understands the game pretty well and can give me good help."

McKernan, as he has become familiar with, comes out of contract at the end of this year. This time, he's not worrying about what will happen.

"It's something you try not to think about and this year I've been better about not thinking about the future and trying to work out the scenario of what could happen or what might happen,” he said.

"This year I've been better at keeping it simple and not jumping ahead to the future."
http://www.afl.com.au/news/2018-05-25/positive-attitude-the-key-for-luckless-bomber
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Bomber Thompson's court case adjourned
MARK 'Bomber' Thompson has dashed in and out of a Melbourne court in a flash, almost avoiding cameras as his drug trafficking case was adjourned for a month.

Thompson was due to face Melbourne Magistrates Court on Friday over drug charges linked to a police raid at his Port Melbourne home earlier this year.

His case was listed for 10am but the former Essendon captain surprised waiting media members when he arrived at court at midday and darted up the stairs.

Thompson, wearing a dark suit and tie, and his lawyer then adjourned the case administratively at a court desk, meaning he didn't appear before a magistrate.

Barely 15 minutes after he arrived, the 54-year-old dashed outside to a waiting car and hopped in, again surprising photographers who scrambled to take their shots.

Thompson, who played in three premierships with Essendon and coached Geelong to two flags, is facing seven drug-related offences, including trafficking and possession.

Methamphetamine, ecstasy, LSD and MDMA were found in plastic bags during a raid of Thompson's residence on January 5, police say.

Some of the drugs were found in a small room protected by a keypad that investigators allege only Thompson could access.

Geelong memorabilia was also allegedly found in the room.

Thompson was interviewed by detectives in January but he was not charged with any crimes until May 1.

He was released on bail despite police believing he was a flight risk because he had access to a yacht and money.

He agreed to pay a $20,000 surety and notify authorities if he needs to travel interstate for football commitments.

Strict bail conditions require Thompson to report to police three times a week.

He has also been banned from contacting Thomas Windsor, Katia Drcec and Karl Holt, who were charged following the raid.

Thompson is expected to return to court on June 28.
http://www.afl.com.au/news/2018-05-25/bomber-thompsons-case-adjourned-for-a-month
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Hall of Fame: Sheeds a legend !
THE AUSTRALIAN Football Hall of Fame has its 28th Legend: Kevin Sheedy.

One of footy's greatest innovators, Sheedy was elevated to Legend status in Tuesday night's 2018 Australian Football Hall of Fame ceremony.
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Sheedy made his mark on the game as a triple premiership player with the Tigers, before guiding the Bombers to four more flags from the coach's box.

As well as a champion coach and player, he was a visionary, helping forge integral elements of the modern game such as the Anzac Day blockbuster, and taking a pioneering role as Greater Western Sydney's inaugural coach.

Sheedy's chapters in football folklore are many.

There's the great Essendon coach waving his jacket after a win against West Coast in 1993. Or referring to umpires as 'Martians' to avoid being sanctioned for criticising the whistleblowers.

Behind his quirks and eccentricities, though, lies a brilliant mind and extraordinary talent, as demonstrated by his four premierships as coach and a further three as a player.

Dubbed a "back pocket plumber" by then-Tigers coach Tom Hafey, Sheedy was tremendously tough and hard working in helping his side win Grand Finals in 1969, 1973 and 1974.

He played 251 games for Richmond, then coached 669 matches at Essendon and Greater Western Sydney.

Sheedy coached the Bombers to flags in 1984, 1985, 1993 and 2000 before finishing up there in 2007 after a 27-year stint.

"Only two people in the world did 27 years: Nelson Mandela and myself," a deadpan Sheedy said on Tuesday night.

He was appointed to the head role at the Giants in 2012, partly because of his brilliant promotional skills. He has advanced the game like few others before him.

"You dream as a kid. To think it could come true is another difficult story," Sheedy said.

Sheedy toasts the game as Hall of Fame attendees wave Essendon scarves in tribute. Pictures: AFL Photos

Hafey played a big role in Sheedy's career.

"Tom taught me how to have an attitude. That's the best skill he gave me," Sheedy said.

"He gave me a chance in the back pocket and that's all I needed, just to get into the team and get into a position, and try and work out where you could get to on your talent, or lack of it.

"He was a great coach."

Coaching was more fulfilling than playing, for one simple reason.

"Playing, I knew what I was doing. Coaching, I had no idea what I was doing," Sheedy quipped.
https://www.afl.com.au/news/2018-05-29/australian-football-hall-of-fame-2018
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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AFL CEO Gillon McLachlan could face court over handling of Essendon supplements saga.
AFL boss Gillon McLachlan may be cross-examined in court about the league's handling of the Essendon supplements saga after losing a bid to stop the issue becoming the subject of a full Supreme Court trial.

McLachlan, former AFL chairman Mike Fitzpatrick and the league are fighting a case brought by lawyer Jackson Taylor which alleges they engaged in misleading and deceptive conduct.

In January 2016, anti-doping authorities suspended 34 Essendon players for 12 months for their involvement in the supplement program run by the club four years earlier.

When details of the program emerged in 2013, the AFL suspended coach James Hird for bringing the game into disrepute, fined the club $2 million and kicked the side out of that year's finals series.

Mr Taylor's case relies on a series of statements made by McLachlan and Fitzpatrick in media interviews in the 13 months from January 2016, including that the AFL had exercised reasonable care in protecting the health and safety of Essendon players, and had not asked the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority to remove material unfavourable to the AFL from its interim report.

The AFL had applied for a preliminary hearing in the case which would limit the number of witnesses called and discovery of documents.

It had hoped to avoid a full trial which it argued would cost $700,000 to prepare, and involve thousands of documents, people who no longer work for the AFL, the league's executive including former chief executive Andrew Demetriou, and legal department.

But Justice John Dixon ruled the preliminary issues should not be heard separately and a full trial should proceed.

McLachlan and Fitzpatrick are likely to be called as witnesses.

"The court will have to consider the same or related questions in the context of a full trial," Justice Dixon said. "Such duplication of effort may prolong proceedings rather than shorten litigation and may unfairly disadvantage the plaintiff."

There will be a preliminary hearing on a more confined issue before a trial date is set.

Mr Taylor has no direct financial interest in prosecuting his claim, but has told the court he had brought the legal action in "the public interest".

The AFL was ordered to pay Mr Taylor's legal costs in fighting the application.
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-06-06/afl-bosses-may-appear- ... ga/9839740
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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AFL chief Gillon McLachlan says money being ‘wasted’ on ‘odd’ new Essendon drugs saga case
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AFL chief executive Gillon McLachlan. (Photo by Michael Willson/AFL Media/Getty Images) Source: Getty Images
AFL chief executive Gillon McLachlan says a lot of money has been “wasted” on an “odd” legal case against him and former AFL chairman Mike Fitzpatrick over their handling of the Essendon drug saga.

McLachlan and Fitzpatrick are accused of misleading and deceptive conduct by trying to smooth over the league’s involvement in the scandal during media comments they made in 2016 and 2017 in its aftermath.

The AFL boss says he hasn’t thought too much about the case, launched by Melbourne lawyer Jackson Taylor, but considers it an “odd one”.

“The Essendon issue is sort of closed and solved and it’s gone to court and been found legal,” McLachlan told 3AW radio on Friday.

“This is an individual who has got a grievance about some comments made in the media. It seems like a lot of wasted money to me ... anyway, it’ll play out.”

McLachlan said Essendon, who were hit with heavy punishments by the AFL and the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority after investigations into a 2012 supplements program, want the saga to be over.

“The Essendon footy club and players and others just want to move on,” he said.

Mr Taylor has alleged the AFL breached consumer laws to protect the league’s commercial interests after the scandal came to light.

His claims include McLachlan denying he tried to engineer outcomes before players and officials were interviewed by ASADA and the AFL.

During an interview with Fox Sports, McLachlan also said the league had taken reasonable care to protect the health and safety of Essendon players.

Mr Taylor, who has no financial interest in the case and has previously said he’s pursuing it in the public interest, wants the court to declare McLachlan, Fitzpatrick and the AFL acted unlawfully.

The AFL in March sought that three questions in the case be discussed at a preliminary hearing.

League lawyers argued a full trial would be very expensive to prepare and a mini-trial would limit the need for witnesses and documents.

One issue was whether the statements made by McLachlan and Fitzpatrick were in the course of “trade or commerce” under consumer laws.

Supreme Court judge John Dixon on Wednesday ruled against the AFL’s request in relation to two of the legal issues.

Justice Dixon also ordered the AFL pay Mr Taylor’s costs in opposing the application for the mini-trial.

A preliminary hearing will be held for the third question before a trial date is set.

- AAP
https://www.foxsports.com.au/afl/afl-chief-gillon-mclachlan- ... 6532bc5f78
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Finals on Dons' agenda, but work to do.
ESSENDON still has work to do to become a serious top-eight contender, but coach John Worsfold says the Bombers' belief that they can compete with the AFL's best sides is growing after watching his outfit topple West Coast.

The Dons stormed the Eagles' almost impregnable fortress – where they had only lost once in seven games – and blitzed the home side with a stunning six-goal-to-nil opening term.

West Coast fought back but inaccuracy proved costly and Essendon came away with a fourth win from five games – including three road triumphs – by 28 points.

The Bombers will almost certainly be sitting two wins outside the eight after round 14, but their finals hopes remain after improving to a 6-7 record.

"Our chances of making the eight are less than the teams already in the eight. They have to do less to make it than we do," a realistic Worsfold said post-match.

"But they have got to do it, and we've got to do our part, which is keep winning games. I'm not into the odds of all that, but we're going to have a crack at improving our footy.

"We want to become a great team and I've said that before this year. We want to become a team that is capable of winning the premiership and we still have a lot to learn and work on.

"Belief is pretty strong in that when we are playing our best footy, we can compete with the best teams in the comp."

The Bombers were rampant early against West Coast, playing with dash and dare and converting their chances into a match-defining 37-point lead at quarter-time.

Big-name recruits Jake Stringer (three goals), Devon Smith (23 disposals, three goals) and running backman Adam Saad (26 possessions) were outstanding, especially early, and Worsfold is seeing his side's chemistry improve by the week.

The Bombers coach was under pressure to keep his job when Essendon slipped to 2-6 but has turned the club around.

"I would have hoped that (chemistry) was going to be an area of continued improvement throughout the year," he said.

"Not only what those guys are understanding about the way we want to play and what they bring to the team, but everyone getting to know each other better.

"We are seeing a lot of improvement across the board - even our young midfielders like (Andrew) McGrath and (Matt) Guelfi and playing their roles.

"They are really having a strong impact on the team. They're still learning about how they are playing alongside some of those more senior mids."

Stringer was quiet after his three-goal burst, with Worsfold revealing the ex-Dogs star was battling a sore leg and was "hindered fairly badly".

Fifth-gamer Mason Redman was on crutches after the match with an ankle problem, although Worsfold was unsure of the severity of his injury.

The Bombers return home to take on Etihad Stadium co-tenant North Melbourne next round and face finals contender Collingwood after that.

With Gold Coast and Fremantle to finish the month, Essendon can still dream of playing finals, despite probably needing at least six more wins from the last nine games.

"We've made things pretty tough through a scratchy period and early in the season, but we're building better form, better chemistry," Worsfold said.

"So overall we just look forward to another massive game against the Kangaroos next week."
http://www.afl.com.au/news/2018-06-22/finals-on-dons-agenda-but-theres-work-to-do
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Mark 'Bomber' Thompson faces court over drugs charges


Taking the stairs for a swift exit, Mark "Bomber" Thompson left court on the reassurance his next appearance would finally offer some clarity around his drug charges.

The former AFL great court fronted the Melbourne Magistrates Court on Thursday where his case was adjourned until July 31.
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Police prosecutor Geoff Adams told Magistrate John Doherty the case required the appearance of the police informant to proceed. She is currently on leave.

He said it would be then that the court would learn what is "tied" to Mr Thompson and his co-accused.

"We should have a clear directive that day what way it's going," Sergeant Adams said.

Mr Doherty extended Mr Thompson's bail until that day with the same stringent reporting conditions.

"Bail will be extended for a special mention on that day," he said.

The premiership coach is facing seven charges, including trafficking ecstasy and ice.

Mr Thompson, dressed in a fitted grey suit and striped tie, sat silent throughout the brief appearance but was visibly uncomfortable.

He unfolded the hands in his lap only to glance at his nails and the two iPhones tucked away in his suit jacket pockets.

Outside court, Mr Thompson appeared more relaxed and talked with his legal team before making a quick exit down the stairs and into a car waiting outside.

Mr Thompson's home, a converted warehouse property in Port Melbourne, was raided on January 5.

Inside, police allege they found an array of illicit substances and drug paraphernalia in areas of the apartment, including a security-coded room filled with AFL memorabilia.

Substances allegedly found in Mr Thompson's bedroom area included 134.6 grams of MDMA, 5½ Xanax tablets and methamphetamine, as well as two sets of digital scales, eight hard drives, four ice pipes and a shoe box filled with clear resealable bags.
https://www.theage.com.au/national/victoria/mark-bomber-thom ... 4zo9b.html
Now just why does one have two iphones, you can only talk on one at a time. :?
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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From this week's "Domain Review" (formerly "The Weekly Review"):
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"If I look back on what happened in 2016 ;there were all those feelings of fear & anxiety & pressure
& uncertainty, but that was where all the opportunities for everything that happened came from."

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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Dons' free kick differential 'alarming': Woosha
ESSENDON coach John Worsfold has locked in a time later in the week for AFL Umpires boss Hayden Kennedy to come to Tullamarine and address the club's "alarming" free kick differential.

The Bombers have received a total of 35 less free kicks than their opponents over the last three weeks in games against Brisbane, West Coast and Collingwood.

Against the Magpies at the MCG on Sunday, the Bombers received 17 free kicks to the opposition's 27.

"It would be fair to say that I want general clarity. We're down 35 free kicks in three weeks which is really quite alarming," coach John Worsfold said on Tuesday.

"That doesn't mean anyone's made any mistakes, other than some of our guys' technical stuff or our understanding of it so we need to be clear on that.

"That's the idea. We'll get Hayden out, let's go through it and I'll get the other coaches involved in any queries that they may have whether it's in marking contests or stuff around the ball.

"That will help us."

How holding the ball free kicks are adjudicated by umpires will be at the top of the agenda for Kennedy's visit.

"The prior opportunity is a real tough one. The AFL probably have to say, 'Is there any good definition of what prior opportunity is? And if there's not then maybe it's either dropping the ball or it's not,'" Worsfold said.

"I'm not sure if it's around specific types of free kicks that's why I want Hayden to come and address us. He'll have a better analysis of what's been going wrong for us and why we're either giving away so many free kicks or potentially not getting any."

Meanwhile, star forward Orazio Fantasia is no certainty to return from a groin complaint against Gold Coast on Saturday night and will have a fitness test later in the week.

The important forward was a late withdrawal out of Sunday's clash with Collingwood.

"He's certainly not ruled out this week but he needs to prove his fitness," Worsfold said.

"He went for a run yesterday (Monday) just to get up and going and he'll test it more seriously in the coming days, so really unknown at this stage."

Worsfold expects David Myers (corked calf) to play, with the Bombers forced to make two changes with Jake Stringer (calf) to be sidelined for up to a month and Patrick Ambrose (hamstring) to miss the rest of the season.

The Bombers have also not put a line through Joe Daniher (osteitis pubis) as yet and if everything goes to plan Worsfold is hopeful the big forward may return later in the season.

"The call is he'll progress his rehab and he's got a program mapped out that will see him back potentially playing footy later this year providing he meets all the criteria along the way," Worsfold said.

Darcy Parish gathered 39 disposals in an impressive first hit-out back in the VFL after overcoming a thumb injury and will push for a recall.

Defender Aaron Francis and Matt Dea, the carryover emergency for the game against the Pies, will be others who are considered for senior selection.
http://www.afl.com.au/news/2018-07-10/woosha-wants-a-meeting-with-the-umpires
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Michael Long’s legacy forged in bronze

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Michael Long aap
Essendon champion Michael Long’s legacy both as a champion in football and for reconciliation will forever be assured with a bronze statue unveiled at Bomber headquarters in Tullamarine on Tuesday.

“I used to watch Superman, actually. He was the man of steel, now I’m the man of bronze,” the two-time premiership player joked.

In an emotional address, Long fought back tears at times as he described what a great honour it was to become the first player in Essendon’s long and storied history to get a statue erected at the club.

Long thanked the club, his family and Victorian premier Daniel Andrews, among many others, for helping him make a significant impact in helping Indigenous Australians, but he reserved his biggest thanks for former coach Kevin Sheedy.

“This statue is a reflection of also part of this man behind me here (Sheedy),” said Long, who played 190 games for Essendon from 1989 to 2001.

“What he’s done for Indigenous Australia, not just on the field but off the field, he’s the reason why I’m standing here because Essendon has given me that platform to go away and do what I’ve done not only on the field but off the field and it’s made me a greater person and a better person.

“Kevin Sheedy has been one person ever since I got here that has been a part of that journey and making Australia a greater country because of the influence and recruiting Indigenous players back then - that’s something the statue is a symbol for a lot of things and a lot of people that the football club and Kevin Sheedy have contributed to.

“This is what this club has done for me and my family.”

Sheedy said it was “lovely” to hear Long say those things about him.

“To see him there in front of his own statue is just an incredible story and the journey that had been taken over that 30 years as a player and a non-player leader in Indigenous Australia a beautiful story,” Sheedy said.

Long admitted he was a bit hesitant at first when asked by the club if he would accept the honour.

“I was a bit taken aback by it and there was a bit of silence, I thought there’s been ... greater people than me that should be bestowed this honour,” he said.

“But I thought about it and I’m very privileged that his has happened and to have a statue a part of such a great club and legacy and obviously the work with the Long Walk, this is certainly one of the major highlights that you’d never thought as a past player, and the work we do with the Long Walk, that this would happen.”

Long was involved in one of the most pivotal moments in VFL/AFL history with regards to race relations when he was vilified by Collingwood ruckman Damian Monkhorst in the 1995 Anzac Day game.

The now 48-year-old took a stand, prompting the league to introduce a racial and religious vilification code. However, Long believes society has come a long way in the past 23 years.

“I think we’re in a better place,” he said. “There’s so many different cultures playing our great game, having an influence at different levels, but footy’s put a dent in that. It’s unacceptable and it’s made enormous change ... you can never undersell what it (racial and religious vilification code) has done to our game.”

Sheedy knew that Long would become a leader of his people after that infamous incident.

“I thought Michael got pretty serious about it all then and it wasn’t going to be about footy and I think that was probably one of the steps of leadership that he showed for his people in the game of footy and outside the game of footy,” Sheedy said.

Long’s son Jake now plays at Essendon and, when asked what he makes of having his father watch over him every day heading into work from now on, Jake joked: “I’ll have to walk past him and rub the belly for good luck, the big fella.”

Meanwhile, Andrews was full of praise for the impact Long has had on society.

“When you think about the leadership that Michael offers today and leadership that he has always offered ... we are so deeply proud of you Michael as a champion of our game and a champion person,” Andrews said.

“(You are) someone who has done so very much in the cause of proper, meaningful, concrete and tangible reconciliation and also justice for Aboriginal Australians.

“Michael, you are an outstanding person, and we are in your debt for your leadership, for your contribution, for the generosity with which you work so very hard to make our country a fairer and better place.”

It was Long’s first public appearance for months as he continues to recover from a life-threatening bout of Melioidosis.
https://www.theage.com.au/sport/afl/michael-long-s-legacy-fo ... 4zs0c.html
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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'Collective discussion' soon on Goddard's future

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WILL Brendon Goddard play on in 2019?

Essendon's oldest and most experienced player is having another solid season in the red and black – his sixth at the club since crossing from St Kilda – and has shown he is still a valuable member of the side.

However, he is out of contract, with a decision to be made in coming weeks about his future.

Coach John Worsfold said on Wednesday the Bombers will revisit talks with the 33-year-old before the end of the season to get a gauge on Goddard's plans.

"The discussion with Brendon and the club will happen later in the year. The way he's playing right now, he could still be a valuable part of our squad next year," Worsfold said.

"It will be a collective discussion. I had a chat with Brendon earlier in the year and I will follow up with him over the next month."

At the end of 2012, Goddard became football's first high-profile free agent to change clubs, and he has finished in the top-five of Essendon's best and fairest in all five of his completed seasons. He would be in the running to do that again in 2018.

The 328-gamer has been remarkably durable throughout his career and has played every game this season, averaging 23.5 disposals.

He can play in the midfield or in a sweeping role across half-back, but the Bombers do have young depth in the back-half, with Aaron Francis and Jordan Ridley playing at VFL level and Martin Gleeson to come back into the line-up next year after injury.

Worsfold said the Bombers would need to consider the youth on the list when considering what Goddard could bring next year if he played on.

"When you look at your list and what you've got available, that's what shapes the decisions you make about your squad going forward," he said.

"We have to weigh up what's on our list, what role Brendon offers us and how we want to use him.

"If I said to him that all those players had gone past him and you're welcome to stay but we'll play you in the VFL all year, he may not decide to want to play on.

"That's an unknown at the moment. At the moment, it's pretty hard for anyone to say they can come in and offer more than what Brendon's doing."

The Bombers head into Saturday's clash with Fremantle with their finals hopes still intact, and could welcome back important pair Orazio Fantasia (adductor) and David Zaharakis (shoulder) from injury.

Kyle Langford has helped fill the midfield void after Zaharakis' round 11 injury, and in the past month he has averaged 21 disposals a game.

Langford is also out of contract at the end of the season, with Worsfold saying talks were progressing to extend the 21-year-old's stay at Tullamarine.

He also praised Langford for learning on the run in his midfield position.

"He's hasn't played a lot of AFL midfield footy. He might've played two games there last year and maybe six there this year, so considering he's in his first dozen games in the midfield in the AFL, I think he's showing a lot of growth," Worsfold said.
https://www.afl.com.au/news/2018-07-18/collective-discussion-on-whether-goddard-goes-again
Well I would take him back at St.Kilda if the Bombers don't want him :!: :D
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Bombers delist veteran: No new contract


BRENDON Goddard was 'jolted' by the news he would not be offered a new contract by Essendon, Bombers coach John Worsfold admitted.

The 33-year-old has played every game this season and averaged 22 disposals, but was told on Monday he would not be kept on by the Bombers for 2019.

The former Saint, who emotionally addressed his teammates on Tuesday morning, will consider playing on at a third club next year after disagreeing with the Bombers' call.

"A lot of people probably thought I would be angry and bitter ... but in all honesty I'm not - I'm sad and disappointed because I love the game and I love being here," Goddard said in a video posted on essendonfc.com.au.

"I know the brutality of football and the reality of it.

"I respect the decision although I don't agree with it.

"Great organisations and footy clubs are built of making tough decisions and that's why I'm not bitter and angry as much as people think I might be.

"I walk away on Saturday a better person and that's the most important thing."

Since joining the Bombers at the end of 2012 from St Kilda as a restricted free agent, Goddard has played 128 games.

He has finished in the top five of the club's best and fairest every year so far in his time in the red and black, including winning the Crichton Medal in 2013, and is also likely to feature again in the top 10 of this year's count.

Goddard's final game for the Bombers will come on Friday night against Port Adelaide at Adelaide Oval, but Worsfold said the veteran defender hadn't requested he be told before the end of the season.

Worsfold said Goddard didn't agree with the Bombers' decision.

"That would be fair to say, yes. He feels he can still contribute on the field at a really good level and that's the hard part because he still has done that this year," Worsfold said.

"It's an unknown how well he would contribute next year, but as I talked about we've got so many other factors we've had to throw into the pot to weigh up."

The Bombers' group of young half-backs – including NAB AFL Rising Star nominee Aaron Francis, Jordan Ridley, Mason Redman and Martin Gleeson – was one factor when they made up their minds on whether to give Goddard one more season.

He said the news had been difficult for Goddard to take in.

"Yesterday it was a jolt for him. Basically had to deliver the message and then let him have his space to digest it. I was comfortable with that and then had a couple of text messages with him later in the day and followed up with him this morning," he said.

"Overall he's a realist, he understands the industry and understands there's constant decisions being made about lists, selection week to week, and he understands what the club's had to do."

Worsfold was unsure if Goddard would play on elsewhere next year, but added the sharp-kicking half-back/midfielder, who was one of the best players in the competition during his time at the Saints, could still play at a high level.

"He potentially would be able to contribute elsewhere at the level depending on what any other club required and what role they wanted him to play and what they expected from his output. That's up for everyone else to measure now," he said.

Essendon still has a number of players out of contract as it heads into the off-season, including Mitch Brown, Jayden Laverde, Michael Hartley, Josh Green, Mark Baguley, James Stewart, Matthew Leuenberger and Shaun McKernan.

Worsfold is not expecting a "big" list turnover, and said the club is in negotiations with Laverde's management for a new deal.

Brendon Goddard at Essendon
- Played 128 of a possible 133 games.
- 56 wins, 71 losses, 1 draw, 56 goals, 42 behinds.
- 20 Brownlow votes.
- 2 finals, 2 losses.
- Three times in the top three of the B&F.
- Captain in 27 games.
- Played under five different senior coaches – James Hird, Simon Goodwin, Mark Thompson, Matthew Egan and John Worsfold.

At St Kilda
- Played 205 of a possible 237 games between 2003-2012.
- 126 wins, 76 losses, 3 draws, 104 goals, 71 behinds.
- 56 Brownlow votes.
- 16 finals, three Grand Finals.
- Twice in the top three of the B&F.
- Twice All Australian.
http://www.afl.com.au/news/2018-08-21/goddard-done-with-dons-no-new-contract#/
There are thee clubs said to be interested, Fremantle, Gold Coast & St.Kilda.
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Dons reward key forward with two-year deal
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ESSENDON has rewarded forward Shaun McKernan with a new two-year deal.

McKernan, who started the year as a rookie, has been upgraded to the senior list and will be at the Bombers until at least the end of 2020.

The 28-year-old, who ended his season with a badly torn hamstring in round 18, played 10 games this year and kicked 16 goals.

McKernan also averaged 5.6 marks and 13.3 disposals a game in 2018.

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He has taken his career tally to 62 matches: 28 for Essendon and 34 for Adelaide, between 2009 to 2014.

McKernan said he was believed the Bombers, who finished 11th this year, just one win out of the top eight, were building "something special".

"I felt this year I was able to contribute strongly to the side and I'm looking forward to continuing that over the next two years," McKernan said.

"Over the pre-season I want to build on my game and not rely solely on my marking, but also offer defensive pressure in the forward line.

"I am eager to get back on the track and work hard over the off-season and see what we can achieve as a team in 2019 and beyond."

Coach John Worsfold said McKernan's ability to play both as a strong marking forward and spend time in the ruck made him a valuable asset.

"His attitude and work ethic are outstanding and make him a well-respected member of this team," Worsfold said.

"We are extremely happy to see Shaun fulfilling his potential and we believe he will be an important part of our team in the future."
https://www.afl.com.au/news/2018-09-14/dons-reward-key-forward-with-twoyear-deal
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Essendon at Trade Week 2018:

In: Dylan Shiel, 2019 second-round pick, 2019 fourth-round pick

Out: Travis Colyer, pick 9, 2019 first-round pick

Win: A classy left-footed midfielder in his prime

Lose: Pacy outside runner and their first pick in each of the next two drafts

2018 draft picks: 34, 66, 84

What couldn't they get done? The Bombers aimed far and wide in 2018 to bolster their midfield. Throughout the year they circled Andrew Gaff, Mitch Wallis and Tom Scully, while in the Trade Period Carlton beat them in the race for GWS youngster Will Setterfield and their efforts to convince Gold Coast to release contracted midfielder Jack Martin were rebuffed. The Dons were also linked to Gold Coast key defender Steven May.

Verdict: Having won the four-club race for GWS midfield star Dylan Shiel, the Bombers averted a potential disaster when they finally completed a trade just 10 minutes before the 8.30pm trade deadline. The Dons paid a high price, having to give up two first-round picks as part of the deal, but Shiel was not the most sought-after midfielder in this year's Trade Period for no reason. A prolific ball-winner and damaging runner, he will immediately strengthen an Essendon on-ball division that shaped as the one weak spot on the club's list. The Shiel acquisition is enough on its own to make the Bombers' Trade Period a huge success. - Nick Bowen

Rating: 8.5/10
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Big Bomber retires after turning down new deal
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Matthew Leuenberger has retired
ESSENDON ruckman Matthew Leuenberger has retired despite being offered a new deal.

The Bombers big man was considering a contract offer from the club but has decided against playing on after three seasons at Tullamarine.

He played 29 games for Essendon after 108 at Brisbane, crossing to the Bombers as a free agent at the end of 2015.

The 30-year-old played only two senior games this year after Tom Bellchambers took on the role as No.1 big man.

"It has been a thrill to experience the likes of Anzac Day and watch the group grow to a point where anything is possible next season," Leuenberger said.

"I felt like the flame is now burning too low to compete every day at training let alone game day, and it would have been selfish of me to show up for another season.

"I look forward to sitting back as an Essendon fan to watch next season unfold."

Essendon football manager Dan Richardson said the Bombers were keen for Leuenberger to stay in 2019.

"'Leuey' is a great person and although we would've loved to see him continue, we are excited to see what lies ahead for him in the future," Richardson said.

"He has shown dedication in all that he does and has been a great mentor to our younger players through their development."

It leaves Bellchambers as the Bombers' only ruckman with senior experience, although they have high hopes for young option Sam Draper.

Shaun McKernan has also been a pinch-hit ruck option in his time at Essendon.
https://www.afl.com.au/news/2018-10-24/big-bomber-leuenberger-hangs-up-the-boots
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Bombers record profit
Essendon Football Club is delighted to announce a net operating profit of $2,321,871 for the 2018 financial year.

The club’s cash profit was $5.7 million, before amortisation and depreciation. This includes donations and other one-off items of $1.7million.

At 31 October 2018, the net assets of the club were $36.1 million, compared with $32.5 million in 2017. The Bombers also increased their overall record membership figure to 79,318, almost 12,000 greater than the previous year.

Additionally, the club took another step forward reducing its borrowings from $6.9 million to $3.9 million.

Chief Executive Xavier Campbell said the club was pleased to have recorded strong consecutive profits in as many years.

“We have a very clear and strategic plan in place. It’s a significant outcome and our cash profit of nearly $5.7million puts us in a strong position,” Campbell said.

“Our members and supporters continue to be at the forefront of our organisation. Our membership grew by just under 12,000 year-on-year, which reflects the incredible support we have from our loyal fan-base. This also contributed to a significant uplift in terms of net revenue which remains important for our football club’s growth.

“We have taken important steps to reduce our debt. While there will be some further borrowings associated with our facility expansion over the next two years, the position we have got to and our strong cash flows mean that we will be able to keep it at a manageable level.

“Strategic investment across all areas of our business remain a priority through areas such as our men’s and women’s football programs, as well as next generation academies and our strategy investments division. They remain vitally important pillars for our long-term growth as an organisation.

“The upcoming season provides an exciting opportunity for our football club to continue its pursuit of on-field success, and the first step of our 2019 campaign will commence next week with our full playing list returning for pre-season.”

Key points of the Club’s 2018 financial result:

Net operating profit of $2.3 million and cash surplus of $5.7 million.
Membership revenue increased by $1.6 million as a result of the membership tally increasing from 67,768 to 79,318.
The Club reduced its borrowings from $6.9 million to $3.9 million year-on-year.
Net assets of the Club were $36.1 million, compared with $32.5 million in 2017.
Net increase of $0.8 million in marketing revenues, including sponsorships and match-day revenues.
Significant additional investment into the club’s AFL football program and inaugural VFLW team.
Additional investment into the club’s football Next Generation Academies.
http://www.essendonfc.com.au/news/2018-11-15/bombers-record-profit
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Zac's back: Ex-Docker gets green light to join Essendon
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Zac Clarke is free to join Essendon as a rookie
FORMER Fremantle ruck-forward Zac Clarke is one step closer to joining Essendon, with the AFL ruling him eligible to sign with the Bombers under new rookie rules.

AFL.com.au reported on Tuesday night that Clarke and Essendon were waiting on AFL approval to enable the 101-gamer, who played in the WAFL this year, to join the club and avoid the draft.

The rules mean any player who previously nominated for the draft or retired, delisted himself or was delisted and spent a year out of the AFL becomes a free agent of sorts.

It is a similar arrangement that will allow Shane Mumford to come out of retirement and rejoin Greater Western Sydney without the risk of a rival team swooping in the draft.

They have the opportunity to sign as Category A rookies in the pre-season supplemental selection period (SSP) between December 1 and March 15, after next week's drafts are over.

Clarke, 28, doesn't qualify as a delisted free agent because he spent a season out of the AFL, but the new rules are effectively an extension of that status.

Any player delisted in a previous year qualifies to sign with any club in the SSP, but teams cannot cut a footballer then re-recruit them via this method in the same year.

The only scenario where that could happen is if that player goes undrafted before the SSP.

That means clubs still risk losing a player when they delist them with a promise to re-rookie them.

What will likely become known as the Mumford rule allows the same luxury for a retired footballer and/or a player who delisted himself and has not been on an AFL list for at least one year.

A player who retires cannot sign in the SSP in the same year unless they nominate and are overlooked in the drafts.

However, a player who nominated for and was not selected in the National Draft and committed for a further year as a 19-year-old in a Northern Academy or Next Generation Academy is not eligible for SSP selection.

Clarke chose the Bombers over at least two other clubs, both of which he had either undergone a medical or had organised to.

Essendon preferred the 203cm giant over Western Bulldogs discard Tom Campbell, who, like Clarke, completed a medical at Tullamarine.

The Bombers entered the mature-age ruck market after Matthew Leuenberger decided to retire despite having a one-year offer.

Clarke would give them an experienced back-up to Tom Bellchambers and allow 20-year-old Sam Draper to continue his development in the VFL without as much pressure to perform.

The Dockers cut Clarke at the end of the 2017 season after two surgeries and related complications with the patella in his left knee ruined his last year out west.

But he bounced back this past season to star with eventual WAFL premier Subiaco.

Clarke made 20 WAFL appearances and kicked 28 goals in the 2018 season, while averaging 15.7 disposals, 4.6 marks and 39 hit-outs.

He had at least 50 hit-outs in his last three matches this past season, including the Lions' Grand Final triumph over West Perth, and managed the feat twice more before that.
https://www.afl.com.au/news/2018-11-15/new-rookie-rules-clark ... -of-choice
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Here are the Bombers draft pick from last week's AFL draft:

Pick 38: Irving Mosquito
Image
Irving Mosquito in action for Gippsland Power. (Photo: AFL Media)
Age: 18 Height: 176cm Weight: 72kg Position: Forward Recruited from: Gippsland Power

Essendon's attacking half will boast some extra buzz with the arrival of indigenous small forward Irving Mosquito at the 2018 NAB AFL Draft.

Hailing from Halls Creek and growing up a Bombers supporter, the 18-year-old's dream came true when Hawthorn decided not to match Essendon's bid at pick 38, despite having rights to him under the Next Generation Academy rules.

Possessing an exciting turn of speed and goal sense, Mosquito's creativity will complement the likes of exciting forwards Anthony McDonald-Tipungwuti, Orazio Fantasia and Jake Stringer in seasons to come.

Though he missed the NAB AFL Under-18 Championships through injury, Mosquito showed his ability to turn games in a strong finish to the TAC Cup season with Gippsland Power.

GM of List and Recruiting Adrian Dodoro said Mosquito was an enticing long-term prospect.

"He's an exciting talent. He’s going to take a bit of time, and we know that, but he’s one for the future," Dodoro said.

"He grew up barracking for Essendon, which is a huge bonus, and Michael Long was his idol. There’s already that synergy with the club.

"He’ll do Year 12 next year so there’s no expectations on what he can do next year, but in the future we’ll have a pretty exciting player on our hands."
https://www.essendonfc.com.au/news/2018-11-23/pick-38-irving-mosquito
No doubt he will create a buzz around Bomberland.
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With Essendon's mascot being Skeeter Reynolds it looks like they have some one to live up to the mascot. :D
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Pick 60: Noah Gown

Age: 18 Height: 194cm Weight: 91kg Position: Forward Recruited from: Gippsland Power
Image
Noah Gown in action for Gippsland Power. (Photo: AFL Media)
Essendon has secured fearless key forward Noah Gown from Gippsland Power with pick 60 in the 2018 NAB AFL Draft.

A talented sportsman, the 18-year-old turned down the opportunity to head to the US on a basketball scholarship to pursue his AFL dream.

Gown's standout season in the TAC Cup saw him finish third in the league's goalkicking with 31 majors from 18 games, earning the Power's best and fairest.

His strengths also include contested marking and a knack of reading the drop of the ball, while he's never short on desire to chase and tackle.

GM of List and Recruitment Adrian Dodoro said Gown's "huge upside" was an attraction.

"He didn’t do a pre-season and has a basketball background, so I think with Noah, it (selection) was the fact that he really developed as the year went on," Dodoro said.

"He’s a really competitive player. Getting another tall forward with the capacity to go back was pretty enticing for us."
https://www.essendonfc.com.au/news/2018-11-23/pick-60-noah-gown
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Pick 72: Brayden Ham

Age: 19 Height: 180cm Weight: 65kg Position: Midfield/Forward Recruited from: Geelong Falcons
Image
Brayden Ham starred for the Geelong Falcons in 2018. (Photo: AFL Media)
Essendon has welcomed Geelong Falcons utility Brayden Ham with pick 72 in the 2018 NAB AFL Draft.

Playing as a top-ager in this year's TAC Cup, the versatile 19-year-old from Torquay started the season in midfield before moving to the forward line, along with occasional stints in defence.

He booted 22 goals from 16 games, named among the Falcons' best players on 10 occasions and finishing second in the club's best-and-fairest count behind No.1 draft pick Sam Walsh.

Ham's impressive TAC Cup form saw him invited to this year's draft combine, where he tested as elite in the sprint and endurance tests.

GM of List and Recruiting Adrian Dodoro said he was thrilled to secure Ham with the Bombers' final selection.

"He needs a bit of development, but he ticks all the boxes in terms of speed, agility and importantly endurance," Dodoro said.

"He’s got all the modern-day traits and he uses the ball so well. We were really keen to get him on board."
https://www.essendonfc.com.au/news/2018-11-23/pick-72-brayden-ham
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Rookie pick: Tom Jok
Image
Tom Jok blitzed the Saints' time trial earlier this month. (Photo: AFL Media)
Age: 21 Height: 193cm Weight: 80kg Position: Defender/Midfielder Recruited from: Collingwood VFL

Boyhood Bombers supporter Tom Jok has achieved a lifelong dream, joining Essendon via the 2018 rookie draft.

Selected with the Bombers' first pick in Friday's rookie draft (eight overall), the Sudanese-born 21-year-old arrives at The Hangar after an impressive season with Collingwood's VFL side as a utility.

Overlooked in previous drafts, Jok's story is one of persistence.

He represented Dandenong Stingrays and Victoria Country during his teenage years, before playing a starring role in St Kevin's College's 2017 VAFA premiership triumph.

His case for a spot on an AFL list received a timely boost earlier this month, when he took out St Kilda's time trial after being allowed to train with the Saints.

GM of List and Recruitment Adrian Dodoro said Jok was a remarkable athlete who would offer versatility to the Bombers' list.

"Tom has a huge motor and has been around for a couple of years. He played for Collingwood in the VFL and really impressed us with the way he developed," Dodoro said.

"We think he’ll be able to give us some versatility. He’ll actually come to the club close to our best athlete.

"He grew up barracking for Essendon and he’s hugely enthusiastic. We think we’ve got a reasonably good player.
https://www.essendonfc.com.au/news/2018-11-23/rookie-pick-tom-jok
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Rookie pick: Matt Dea
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Matt Dea - Source: Paul Kane/Getty Images AsiaPac
No stranger to The Hangar, the Bombers have selected Matt Dea with pick 17 in the rookie draft.

The 27-year-old defender began his career at Richmond where he played 31 games before being recruited to Essendon in 2016. He played 39 games in the red and black during his three seasons.

Dea will provide the Bombers with depth in defence and continue to support the development of his younger teammates.

“Matt is a great person and we know what he can deliver on the field, so we’re really pleased to welcome him back to the Club,” GM of List and Recruitment Adrian Dodoro said.

“He is a leader and you can’t underestimate the contribution to the culture he made during his time at the Club. Matt is a great clubman and our players are rapt a person of his calibre is back on the list.”
https://www.essendonfc.com.au/news/2018-11-23/rookie-pick-matt-dea
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Bomber's finger mishap, Daniher still not in full training
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Orazio Fantasia's running will not be affected by the finger injury
ESSENDON forward Orazio Fantasia has suffered a finger injury in a training accident which will affect his pre-season for several weeks.

The exciting small goalkicker had the setback in a training drill, which comes on the back of a frustrating season for the emerging Bomber who was restricted to 13 games and 20 goals in 2018.

Bombers performance manager Justin Crow said the injury should not be a major issue for the 23-year-old after he got his little finger stuck in a jumper.

"We obviously had some concern about that, so we got it scanned. His tendon is intact, which is very good news," Crow told the club website.

"The slip around that tendon, which acts as a pulley, has been affected so you'll see Orazio in a splint over the next couple of weeks.

"Then we'll reassess the finger and see if he needs to continue in a splint beyond that.

"The good news, though, is that Orazio can keep running, kicking the ball and doing bits and pieces with the group that don’t involve tackling or that finger over the next couple of weeks."

The news isn't overly positive for key forward Joe Daniher either, with the 2017 best and fairest winner and All Australia unlikely to rejoin full training until after the club's Christmas break.

Daniher managed just seven games and eight goals last season before succumbing to osteitis pubis that ruled him out for the rest of the year, but he has been on a managed program since then.

"We're building him up really gradually," Crow said.

"The idea is that he gets a big foundation of running and work that we know will set his groins and his body up to have a good season.

"We'll be training him accordingly and taking our time to make sure we get him right for the season."

Marty Gleeson is also yet to resume full training after his ankle surgery in the pre-season competition this year, while captain Dyson Heppell and best and fairest Devon Smith are also yet to start full training after "taxing" seasons.
https://www.afl.com.au/news/2018-11-28/star-bombers-finger-se ... l-training
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Well it seems James Hird can't ride a bike either:
Hird's wife speaks after ex-Essendon coach injured in bike accident
Tania Hird has said husband James is recovering in hospital after being knocked off his bike in Melbourne’s inner-suburbs yesterday.

The 45-year-old was cycling along Burnley Street in Richmond when he was struck by a car just after 3pm.

Hird was taken to the Epworth Hospital with injuries to his wrist and knee.
Image
It's the second time in three years the former football star has been hit while cycling (File image). (9News)
Mrs Hird told the media this morning the former Essendon coach had not suffered any head injuries.

“We had a fabulous surgeon, and the staff at the hospital have been wonderful, they’ve done a terrific job,” Mrs Hird said outside her home.

“He’s had a pin and plates put in his knee and wrist, but no knocks to his head which is fantastic.”
Image
Tania Hird spoke to the media outside her home this morning. (9NEWS)
She also thanked the bystanders who assisted Hird in the moments after the crash.

Hird is no stranger to bike accidents, having suffered a severe concussion in 2015 when his bicycle slipped on tram tracks.

He had been riding home from football training at the time.
Image
Hird has been taken to hospital following the collision. (File image) (9news)
Hird has kept a low profile since he resigned as Essendon coach in August 2015.

His tenure as coach was thrown into turmoil by the 2012 supplements program and subsequent Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority investigation, which led to 34 past and present Bombers being banned for the 2016 season.

Before the supplements saga, Hird had been one of Windy Hill's most-treasured sons, playing 253 games for Essendon and winning the Brownlow Medal in 1996.

In May last year, Hird was left facing legal bills of almost $700,000 after he lost a Victorian Supreme Court bid to have Essendon's insurer pay his legal fees linked to the supplements scandal.

Hird sued Chubb Insurance after the company refused to pay the legal costs of his failed challenge against ASADA in the Federal Court in 2014, and the cost of a subsequent appeal that Hird lost in 2015.
https://www.9news.com.au/national/2018/11/28/16/41/james-hir ... n-richmond
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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The long and short of it: How the Bombers measure up in 2019
AT ESSENDON, it will be a case of the long and the short of it in 2019.

When the Bombers claim former Fremantle ruckman Zac Clarke in the pre-season supplemental selection period (SSP), which opens on Saturday, they will enter next season with 22 players 190cm or taller on their list, the equal-highest tally in the competition alongside Collingwood.

The addition of Clarke, 203cm, will also give them five players 200cm or taller, just one short of the League high of six held jointly by the Blues, Brisbane, Port Adelaide and St Kilda.

But if Essendon is well-placed to rule the air next season, it also has an arsenal of smalls itching to prey on any crumbs left by its giants.

The Bombers boast eight players who stand 179cm or shorter, equal first in the AFL alongside Fremantle. By comparison, reigning premier West Coast, Sydney and North Melbourne will each enter next season with just two players shorter than 180cm on their lists.

The newest member of the Bombers' small fleet is the aptly named Irving Mosquito, the 176cm goalsneak who was part of Hawthorn's Next Generation Academy but landed at Tullamarine after the Hawks declined to match the Bombers' bid of pick No.38 in the NAB AFL Draft.

The Dons' magic bag of small forwards was already well stocked with Orazio Fantasia (177cm) and Anthony McDonald-Tipungwuti (171cm) but it's overflowing now that Mosquito is wearing the red and black.

The looming acquisition of Clarke will also give Essendon a back-up ruck option for Tom Bellchambers in the wake of Matthew Leuenberger's unexpected retirement.

But where the Bombers' big-man stocks are concerned it's the virtual acquisition of Joe Daniher that has some pundits bullish about their top-four chances in 2019.

Daniher was sidelined after round seven last year with osteitis pubis and is not expected to resume full training until after Christmas.

But if the Bombers can get the 2017 All Australian fit and firing their attack will have the focal point it lacked for most of 2018 – Mitch Brown was the leading goalscorer among the Bombers' key forwards last year with 18, way down on the career-high 65 Daniher kicked in 2017.

However, the biggest question mark hovering over Essendon's legitimacy as a contender remains its midfield.

Winning the four-club race for Dylan Shiel during the NAB Trade Period will make a big difference.

But at 182cm, the former GWS star is not the inside beast – think Patrick Cripps, Nat Fyfe or Dustin Martin – the Dons have been crying out for.

After skipper Dyson Heppell (189cm), the members of Essendon's midfield core are all 180cm or shorter – Zach Merrett, Darcy Parish, David Zaharakis and Devon Smith (176cm).

Parting with Brendon Goddard (193cm) won't help either even if the veteran had been a less frequent centre-bounce attendee in recent seasons.

Jake Stringer's first season at Tullamarine suggests the 192cm former Bulldog is a forward who can occasionally pinch-hit in the midfield and no more.

And Andrew McGrath is a class act destined to eventually play on the ball, but at 178cm will only add to the Dons' undersized group.

Which makes David Myers and Kyle Langford, both 191cm, potentially important players for Essendon in 2019.

Myers was ranked joint first at the Bombers in 2018 for average clearances (4.9 a game, equal with Heppell) but injury troubles have meant he has played 20 games in a season just once in his career, in 2013.

Langford also took some significant strides this year, playing 16 games, including the last 14 straight.

If the former No.17 draft pick continues his development in 2019 and Myers stays fit, the Bombers might finally have assembled the midfield that can carry them to their first finals win since 2004.

How teams stack up in 2019
Players 179cm or shorter
8 – Essendon, Fremantle
7 – Richmond
5 – Melbourne, Adelaide, Brisbane, Collingwood
4 – Carlton, Port Adelaide, St Kilda
3 – Geelong, Gold Coast, GWS, Hawthorn, Western Bulldogs
2 – Sydney, West Coast, North Melbourne

180-189cm
28 - North Melbourne
26 – Western Bulldogs
25 – Sydney, Hawthorn, Gold Coast
24 – Geelong, Melbourne, Port Adelaide, West Coast
23 – GWS, St Kilda
22 – Adelaide
20 – Brisbane
19 – Carlton, Collingwood, Richmond
18 – Fremantle
16 – Essendon

190-199cm
17 – Collingwood, Essendon
16 – West Coast
15 – Carlton, GWS, Richmond, Sydney
14 – Brisbane, Geelong, Hawthorn
13 – Fremantle
12 – Adelaide, Gold Coast, Western Bulldogs, Port Adelaide, St Kilda
11 – Melbourne
9 – North Melbourne

200cm+
6 – Brisbane, Carlton, Port Adelaide, St Kilda
5 – Adelaide, Collingwood, Fremantle, Gold Coast, North Melbourne*, Essendon*
4 – Geelong, Sydney
3 – GWS, Hawthorn, West Coast, Western Bulldogs
2 – Melbourne, Richmond
http://www.afl.com.au/news/2018-11-30/the-long-and-short-of- ... up-in-2019
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Long-serving Essendon doctor diagnosed with cancer
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Bruce Reid has been the doctor at Essendon for more than 36 years
ESSENDON club doctor Bruce Reid will be on leave from the club indefinitely after being diagnosed with cancer.

Reid, who has been at the Bombers for more than 36 years, has undergone surgery and is recovering in hospital.

The cancer has been identified as mesothelioma which affects mesothelial cells across internal organs.

"Reidy's health and wellbeing are our No.1 priority during this difficult time," Essendon chief executive Xavier Campbell said.

"He knows he has the full support of the entire Essendon family and the club will continue to do everything we can to support Bruce, his wife Judy and their five children."

Reid was part of Essendon's medical team during the supplements saga of 2012, with the AFL dropping all individual charges against him in September 2013.
https://www.afl.com.au/news/2018-12-21/longserving-essendon-doctor-diagnosed-with-cancer
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Joe loads up: Key Don pushes towards full training
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Joe Daniher is ramping up his training loads in the hope of rejoining the full program
ESSENDON spearhead Joe Daniher completed his biggest session of the pre-season on Wednesday, returning to the track after a week sidelined by illness.
Image
Daniher trained away from the main group, completing a heavy running load, set shots and one-on-one work with assistant coach Ben Rutten.

Having overcome last week's bout of conjunctivitis, Daniher continues to increase his loads after a minimal schedule pre-Christmas following a 2018 campaign derailed by osteitis pubis.

The Bombers remain hopeful the 2017 All Australian will re-join full training before the team's first JLT Community Series clash against Carlton in 43 days' time.

Daniher was joined on the club's second training oval at Tullamarine by big man Cale Hooker and Josh Begley, who clocked long running sessions.

Orazio Fantasia, Marty Gleeson, David Myers, Tom Bellchambers, Conor McKenna, Jayden Laverde and Mark Baguley were put through their paces before heading behind closed doors.

Captain Dyson Heppell was spotted on the track early on before heading indoors and re-emerging in long discussions with coaching staff during competitive drills.

Prized recruit Dylan Shiel, speedster Adam Saad and last year's best and fairest Devon Smith weren't sighted during the open session that lasted close to two hours.

Defender Mason Redman, who is returning from a fractured ankle, completed light rehabilitation work as the rest of the group was put through match simulation, with midfielder Zach Merrett a clear standout.

Tom Hird, son of James, and Mason Fletcher, son of Dustin, enjoyed their second day at the club after being introduced to the pre-season schedule on Tuesday.

Hird, 17, lined up in match simulation – opposed at times to Jake Stringer – as he continues to learn the basics of the game, having played soccer as a junior.

Fletcher, 18, was kept to light duties as he works through back stress fractures that saw him choose to remain in the TAC Cup for 2019 and not nominate for the 2018 NAB AFL Draft.

Both are eligible to be selected by the Bombers as father-son players in this year's NAB AFL Draft.

https://www.afl.com.au/news/2019-01-16/joe-loads-up-key-don-pushes-towards-full-training
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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AFL legend, former chairman in Australia Day honours
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Kevin Sheedy, who was elevated to Legend status last year, was named an Officer (AO) of the Order of Australia
FOOTBALL pioneer Kevin Sheedy, former AFL chairman Mike Fitzpatrick and legendary commentator Dennis Cometti are among those honoured in Australia Day celebrations.

The influential trio were acknowledged for their significant contributions to the sport.

The Order of Australia recognises outstanding community members whose actions and achievements set them apart in a broad range of fields.

For Sheedy, who was named an officer of the Order of Australia (General Division), it is the latest acknowledgement of his extraordinary 50-plus-year involvement in football as a player, coach, mentor, innovator and promoter with no equal.

He was officially installed as a Legend of the game in March last year.

Sheedy, 71, played 251 games and won three premierships as a Richmond footballer before elevating his status after being appointed Essendon coach in 1981 – starting a record-breaking 27-year reign.

He coached the Bombers to four flags in that period and was also in charge of fledgling franchise Greater Western Sydney for its inaugural two seasons in the AFL.

Sheedy helped develop the AFL SportsReady program, a national, not-for-profit company dedicated to helping young Australians move into the workforce.

The football visionary was also instrumental in establishing the Anzac Day blockbuster between Essendon and Collingwood that has delivered a major platform to honour those who fought, or fight, for Australia.

His commitment to the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cause is also significant and unwavering and he was a key figure in developing the annual Dreamtime at the 'G match.

Bombers chairman Lindsay Tanner congratulated Sheedy on his "profound" impact on the sport and beyond.

"A forward-thinker, a mastermind and wonderful advocate for community for over 50 years, Kevin has been a fine ambassador for not only our club, but our society more broadly and his contribution to Australian rules football has been enormous and unrivalled," Tanner said.

"There is arguably no one in our game who is more fitting to deserve this honour today, and we acknowledge Kevin, wife Geraldine and their children on this tremendous recognition."
https://www.afl.com.au/news/2019-01-26/afl-legend-former-chairman-in-australia-day-honours
Essendon champion and indigenous rights advocate Michael Long was the Northern Territory Australian of the Year.
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Woosha, 'shell-shocked' Dons at a loss after horror show
Worsfold: Our players looked 'shell-shocked'

Image

Essendon coach John Worsfold says his side were 'so far off the mark' in a blowout loss to the Giants.
ESSENDON coach John Worsfold was at a loss for answers after his side's woeful 72-point defeat at the hands of Greater Western Sydney on Sunday.

The Bombers, touted as finals contenders ahead of the season opener at Giants Stadium, looked anything but in a match in which they gave up five consecutive goals twice, and let the Giants boot the first six goals of the final term.

The lack of fight from the visitors was alarming, as the GWS midfield made their Essendon counterparts look second-rate.

Despite being without stars Josh Kelly and Callan Ward, the Giants won the contested possession count 157-118, and after struggling in the opening quarter, gained an edge in clearances 32-26 over the final three terms.

"You don't expect to step out like that in round one and be so far off the mark, so we were very disappointed by that," Worsfold said post-match.

"Really after the 20-minute mark of the first quarter, they dominated the game.

"Our players just looked a bit shell-shocked and we couldn't address anything (the Giants did) throughout the game.

"GWS were sensational, they were cleaner and took their opportunities.

"We looked flat and not up to their intensity.

"It wasn't just one area that was off tonight it was pretty much everything.

"I would never accuse any of the players of not giving their all, but their 'all' was well below what we would like from each other."

Worsfold rubbished suggestions that media hype about his side's 2019 fortunes played a part in the loss.

"I don't think so, I'm not really sure how it would," he said.

"There's not too many elite athletes, especially if they move into the top echelon, that get affected by that.

"If we're affected by that then we need to really assess and address it, but I don't think so.

"We just played really poorly.

"I don't think we started favourites, so we lost a game that most people didn't expect us to win.

"That doesn't make it feel any better, but we need to address it."

Former Giant Dylan Shiel had a solid, yet unspectacular debut in Essendon colours, but he did finish with an equal team-high 25 possessions, 18 of those contested, and seven clearances.

"Overall we know what 'Dyl' is going to deliver for us, and unfortunately he was part of a group that didn't deliver," Worsfold said.

"He's hurting as we all are and he's hungry to grow from that."
https://www.afl.com.au/news/2019-03-24/shellshocked-bombers-left-searching-for-answers
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Dons' fitness boss departs, prompting off-field reshuffle
Image
Paul Turk (front centre).
ESSENDON'S fitness department is in for a revamp one week into the season following the departure of strength and conditioning manager Paul Turk.

Turk will this week leave the Bombers after eight years.

He was North Melbourne's strength and conditioning coach for six seasons before joining Essendon.

Turk has accepted a job with AFL Queensland and will be based on the Gold Coast.

Essendon's general manager of football, Dan Richardson, said the Bombers would use current staff to replace the roles played by Turk.

"Paul is Essendon through and through and he's made a difficult decision to leave," Richardson said.

"He told us six weeks ago. He's had aspirations to live on the Gold Coast and we wish him nothing but the best."
https://www.afl.com.au/news/2019-03-25/dons-face-offfield-re ... ss-departs
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Back in the box: Hird set for official return to football
ESSENDON great James Hird will step back into an official football role this weekend when he joins Triple M's commentary team.

The former Bombers coach will be a part of the station's team to call the Essendon and St Kilda clash at Marvel Stadium on Saturday as he begins a regular role in the box.

Hird appeared on a regular podcast last season with former Hawthorn star Shane Crawford, but this is the 46-year-old's first return to a mainstream football position since departing as Essendon coach at the end of 2015.

The 1996 Brownlow medalist and two-time premiership player was coach of the Bombers from 2011-2015, which saw him at the helm during the club's supplements saga.

After being banned from coaching for 12 months, Hird missed the 2014 season and returned to the coaches' box in 2015.

However, with the Bombers' spiralling down the ladder that season while still engulfed by the anti-doping furore, Hird left as coach late in the year.

Hird was a key media figure before taking on the Essendon coaching position, including being a commentator and panelist for Fox Footy.

"It's a privilege for Triple M footy to have one of the greatest players of the AFL era join our team," said the station's content director Ewan Giles.

"James has one of the sharpest footy minds and will be a massive asset to the call team."
https://www.afl.com.au/news/2019-03-27/radio-stint-marks-hirds-official-return-to-football
Let's hope he doesn't ride his bicycle to there.
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Woosha: We're up for the fight
For the second consecutive season, Essendon finds itself with its backs against the wall.

But after a heavy defeat to Greater Western Sydney in round one and a narrow loss to St Kilda on Saturday, senior coach John Worsfold is backing his side to respond.

"They've got a lot of character, this group, and I believe they're going to take on the challenge of fighting through it," Worsfold said in the aftermath of the match.

"They responded pretty well tonight off last week's disappointment around the contest. (We have to) believe in what we're trying to do and keep challenging ourselves to get better."

After losing the contested possession count to the Giants by 40, the Bombers won that stat by 14 today.

That desire to improve is what Essendon needs to show to climb out of its slump.

"It won't turn quickly if we concede and say, 'it's too hard for us'," Worsfold said.

"The only possibility of things turning around for us and becoming better is through commitment to hard work and enjoying the challenge.

"Get backed into a corner and you've got an option. Concede, or fight your way out."

The coach acknowledged his side's mistakes but was pleased with the intent.

"We asked the players to back themselves in today. They really played a bit inhibited last week and it was frustrating for parts of that, but I was pleased they were still backing themselves in," Worsfold said.

"Coming off last week's game, there's no doubt they had heightened nervousness maybe, and maybe a lack of confidence, but they really tried to take the game on and made some brave decisions.

"They messed up some things, but I'd rather see that than not looking like they're getting into a contest, like we saw last week."

Perhaps the most mind-boggling blunder was Kyle Langford running off the ground after conceding a free kick to Jack Lonie, allowing the Saint to bolt away with no-one manning the mark.
Image
Matt Guelfi and Kyle Langford walked off to the bench while the ball was still in play.#AFLDonsSaints
"I don't think he did it deliberately. It was just an honest misread of what was happening in the game and he got the feedback immediately on the bench by his teammates, and he owned that," Worsfold said.

Worsfold was puzzled by the ball movement, which was contrary to what was taught over the summer.

"Some of our entries looked really solid but a lot of the time, we weren't getting the ball where we want it," Worsfold said.

"We've got to challenge the players to say 'why, under pressure, is the ball landing in these areas as opposed to where we had a focus on in pre-season?'.

"We'll try to get to the bottom of that and see if the players are seeing that themselves and make a stronger commitment to that."
https://www.essendonfc.com.au/news/2019-03-30/woosha-were-up-for-the-fight
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Worsfold wants end to Bombers boo boys
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Bombers head coach John Worsfold runs the gauntlet of Essendon fans after the loss to St Kilda.
Essendon coach John Worsfold concedes his side were nervous in their 11-point loss to St Kilda, but is confident his winless AFL club can turn their fortunes around.

The Bombers were booed off the ground repeatedly at Marvel Stadium on Saturday as they slumped to another sorry defeat the start the season.

While this display wasn't as dire as their round one thumping by GWS Giants, their first home match of the season was circled by all and sundry as a win - and they failed to deliver.

Club great Matthew Lloyd was flummoxed while commentating for 3AW, calling their first half performance "non-existent".

"It's hard to know what their brand is right now. It's a real concern," he said.

Lloyd was equally unimpressed with their last-quarter effort, saying the club "just don't have an ability to score".

Former coach and player James Hird agreed on Triple M radio, questioning their ball use into the forward line.

Worsfold conceded riding routes to goal without spearhead Joe Daniher was "a really big challenge".

He was eager to point out the improvement around the contest, with the Bombers winning the contested ball and the clearances.

"We certainly addressed what we felt was unacceptable last week but it wasn't good enough to win a game tonight.

"We asked the players to back themselves in today. They played a bit inhibited last week.

"Coming off last week's game - there's no doubt they had heightened nervousness maybe and maybe a lack of confidence, but they tried to take the game on.

"They messed up some things. I'd rather see that than not looking like they're getting into a contest like last week."

Worsfold said paying punters had the right to boo but they should know it wasn't helpful.

"I hope our supporters understand our players are disappointed. They don't need to be booed to feel disappointed," he said.

"But that's everyone's right. So we'll cop that."


Australian Associated Press.
https://www.muswellbrookchronicle.com.au/story/5983099/worsf ... -boo-boys/
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Stick with us, says Essendon coach Worsfold
After being jeered off the ground by angry supporters, Essendon coach John Worsfold has implored his players to work their way out of a slump that sees them winless after the first two rounds.

Under fierce external pressure after their shock 11-point loss to St Kilda at Marvel Stadium, Worsfold said his players were extremely disappointed by the result.
Image
Bombers head coach John Worsfold speaks to his players at quarter time during the round two AFL match between the Essendon Bombers and the St Kilda Saints at Marvel Stadium on March 30, 2019 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Michael Dodge/Getty Images)
However he said the section of fans that booed the group at quarter time and after the game were wasting their time if they thought it was going to make the players feel worse about their early-season form.
Image
A Bombers fans message to the Bombers head coach John Worsfold is seen by him as he walks past during the round two AFL match between the Essendon Bombers and the St Kilda Saints at Marvel Stadium on March 30, 2019 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Michael Dodge/Getty Images)
"We're disappointed and we understand out supporters are disappointed," Worsfold said.

"I hope our supporters understand our players are disappointed.

"They don't need to be booed to feel disappointed but that is everyone's right so we'll cop that, but the boys are working really hard."

He said he suspected the error-riddled performance in the first half was due to nerves created by their shocking lack of effort in the first round and admitted they were down on confidence.

He said the players must embrace the challenge ahead of them.

"If you get backed into a corner, you have got an option, concede or fight your way out," Worsfold said.

The coach, who has now won 24 of his past 46 games with the Bombers (with 2016, his first season at Essendon, a virtual write-off due to the suspension of key players), said he took heart from the response of the players to win the contested ball and inside-50 count and they would continue to work on their system.

"The players went out and played a better brand of footy but it wasn't good enough to win the game tonight," Worsfold said.

"It is how you deal with these really tough times which is going to be the mark of us as a club more than anything else."

The Bombers entered the season ready to atone from their disappointing 2018 when they won two of their first eight games before flying home to win 10 of their final 14 games to just miss finals.

They were widely tipped to play finals this season.

However, they have not clicked and they kicked just nine goals from 54 inside 50s, with Worsfold bemoaning their ball use in the forward 50.

"It's a really big challenge for us," Worsfold said.

Orazio Fantasia kicked four behinds and Anthony McDonald-Tipungwuti was once again down on form while Shaun McKernan and Mitch Brown did not threaten.

Missing Joe Daniher up forward, Worsfold said they needed to find a way to rectify their scoring woes.

"It's an area we definitely need to keep working hard at," Worsfold said.
https://www.theage.com.au/sport/afl/stick-with-us-says-essen ... 51994.html
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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VFL: Dons outmuscle Zebras
Essendon VFL has come back from a slow start to overcome Sandringham by six goals in its final practice match at Trevor Barker Beach Oval.

With wind, heavy rain and even hail wreaking havoc at times, the Bombers fought hard to record the 11.10 (76) to 5.10 (40) result on Saturday afternoon.

The home side had all the control in the first quarter, leaving defenders Michael Hartley and Brandon Zerk-Thatcher to work overtime under attack.

Vice-captain Heath Hocking kicked a much-needed major at the start of the second term, with Essendon going on to kick five unanswered goals.

The second half saw both sides go hard at the footy in a tight contest, but it was the Bombers who had all the momentum.

Sandringham managed to cut the margin back late, but Essendon had done more than enough to hold on as 36-point victors.

Irving Mosquito (two goals), in his first game in the red and black, provided a ton of excitement with his closing speed and ability to weave in and out of traffic.

Vice-captain Danny Younan (two goals) was influential up forward, while talls Sam Draper and Zac Clarke also competed well around the ground.

Coach Dan Jordan was pleased with how Essendon responded to the challenge.

“We were beaten around the contest in that first quarter and weren’t playing the way we wanted to play, but after quarter-time our intensity around the contest went up significantly,” Jordan said.

“I thought our defenders were outstanding all day, keeping Sandringham to just five goals, and then our forwards started to compete and bring the ball to ground.”

Jordan described the lift in pressure around the contest as a catalyst for the rest of the game.

He also had praise for those who filled the void after losing Wilson Berry, Zerk-Thatcher, Trent Mynott and Jayden Laverde all to injury early.

“I thought Irving Mosquito in his first game looked really sharp, while Nino Lazzaro, Danny Younan, Heath Hocking and Aaron Heppell as our leaders really stood up.

“Noah Gown was also outstanding as a forward, competing in the conditions and bringing the ball to ground to give us some opportunities to score.

“Sam Draper again was incredible, but collectively I think everyone picked up some slack – it was great to see some guys get an opportunity that they may not get for a while.”

Essendon VFL will officially kick off its 2019 campaign against Frankston on Sunday, April 7 from 2pm at Skybus Stadium.

Essendon 0.1 6.6 8.7 11.10 (76)

Sandringham 2.5 3.5 4.7 5.10 (40)

Goals: Mosquito 2, Younan 2, Hocking, Ham, Brown, Z. Clarke, Gown, Houlahan, Lazzaro.

Brooke Varney is in the final year of her Bachelor of Communications (Journalism) degree at RMIT University. As part of their strategic partnership, Essendon Football Club and RMIT University are committed to providing opportunities for students, staff, players and the wider community.
https://www.essendonfc.com.au/news/2019-03-30/vfl-dons-outmuscle-zebras
Image
Mosquito Bomber.

Perhaps Mosquito could put some bite & sting into the Bomber forward line. :idea:
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Hird will 'never say never' to an AFL coaching comeback
Former Essendon great James Hird says he will "never say never" to an AFL coaching comeback.

Hird, who stepped down as Bombers coach in 2015 after serving a 12-month ban over the supplements saga, is happy in his current role as a Triple M commentator but admits he misses the "camaraderie" of being part of a club.
Image
James Hird hasn't ruled out a return to coaching. -.Pic: Getty
Last month it was reported that two clubs had approached Hird about coaching last year, while a third arose over earlier this year through an intermediary.

"I mean, you never say never," Hird told Triple M, according to News Corp.

"At the moment I'm very happy with what we're doing, but who knows?

"I definitely love watching footy, love being involved in footy and I have missed over the last four years that camaraderie, that part of a football club that really gets inside you."

The supplements saga took a massive toll on the Brownlow medallist and he spent time two years ago in a mental health facility.

The AFL booted Essendon out of the 2013 finals and banned Hird for 12 months, among other punishments, over the scandal.

Hird returned as Essendon coach, but resigned during the 2015 season.

Eventually, 34 current and past Essendon players served WADA-imposed doping bans that gutted the club in 2016.

Hird, who won the 2000 Norm Smith Medal, presented the award at the 2017 grand final.

"For everything that happened at Essendon and all the bad times, there was some really good parts of it as well," he said.

"Let's never say never and never close the door totally."
https://www.theage.com.au/sport/afl/hird-will-never-say-neve ... 519bb.html
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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And from today's Melbourne Herald Sun newspaper:
Image

Never say never, I think Sean Connery said that. 8)
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

Post by BigSaint »

Two Dons to miss at least six with hamstring strains.
ESSENDON'S win over Melbourne on Friday night has been soured by news that Shaun McKernan and Kobe Mutch will both miss several weeks with hamstring strains suffered during the game.

Youngster Mutch could miss up to 12 weeks after injury ruled him out of the clash with the Demons during the first quarter, while four-goal star McKernan will miss at least six weeks despite playing out the game.

"Kobe was sidelined early in the first quarter, while Shaun's was less severe and able to play out the rest of the game," Bombers football boss Dan Richardson said.

"While disappointing, both Shaun and Kobe will apply themselves with full dedication to their rehabilitation program over the comings weeks."

There is some looming good news on the injury front for the Bombers, with Cale Hooker likely to return from a calf injury against Brisbane and David Myers a good chance to return after being a late withdrawal against the Demons through illness.
https://www.afl.com.au/news/2019-04-06/two-dons-to-miss-at-least-six-with-hamstring-strains-
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

Post by BigSaint »

Around the state leagues:

State league affiliate: Essendon (VFL)
This weekend: Frankston v Essendon - Sunday, April 7, 2pm, SkyBus Stadium

Key forwards Mitch Brown and James Stewart produced strong auditions to replace the injured Shaun McKernan, bagging nine goals between them in the Bombers' 131-point win over standalone VFL club Frankston at SkyBus Stadium on Sunday.

Brown, who played the opening two rounds at AFL level before being dropped, kicked a game-high five goals while Stewart, who has battled injury and hasn't played at the highest level since round 11 last year, slotted four.

Midfielder Kyle Langford responded strongly to being axed after an inexplicable brain fade against St Kilda, gathering 25 possessions to form part of a dominant midfield that also included busy performances from young runners Dylan Clarke (30 touches) and rookie Trent Mynott (28).
https://www.afl.com.au/news/2019-04-06/around-the-state-leagues-whos-starring-for-your-club
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

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Star Bombers forward in line for Good Friday return
ESSENDON spearhead Joe Daniher could return from injury next week for the Bombers' clash with North Melbourne.

The All Australian forward and Essendon best and fairest has been nursing a calf injury he suffered in the pre-season, but the club is expecting him to be recalled for its Good Friday clash with North Melbourne next week.

"Joe's doing well, he's going to train with the group tomorrow (on Wednesday)," the Bombers' fitness boss Justin Crow told the club's website.

"He’ll do all of that session plus extra to make sure that he's ready for when he returns, not this weekend, but the weekend after."

Daniher has not played an AFL game for Essendon since round seven last year after missing most of 2018 with osteitis pubis.

He played for the Bombers in the pre-season JLT Community Series before suffering the calf strain.

His return to the forward half will be welcome for Essendon, which has lost Shaun McKernan to a long-term hamstring strain he suffered in last week's win over Melbourne.
Image
Meanwhile, Cale Hooker appears set to play his first game of the season after being close to selection against the Demons. He has also overcome a calf strain and is line to face the Lions at the MCG on Saturday.

"Cale trained well last week and also he's performed well on the track this week," Crow.

"We have main training tomorrow and he'll be out there putting his hand up for selection."

However, James Stewart (groin) and Jayden Laverde (ankle) will be unavailable due to their minor setbacks.
https://www.afl.com.au/news/2019-04-09/star-bombers-forward-in-line-for-good-friday-return
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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

Post by maszki »

Another Football Code succumbing to the 'tall poppy syndrome'."(ESPN) - There is no doubt that Cristiano Ronaldo is under investigation by the FIFA, but the real reason why will surprise you. His size and strength has been under speculation since entering the FIFA. Fresh off the "Biggest Comeback In History," the FIFA is now considering banning a nutritional supplement that he has become very dependent on over the years"

"Ronaldo uses a popular supplement designed to burn fat, pack on muscle, and skyrocket energy called DXN Code Strike. It is a common supplement taken by many pro athletes and body builders but the FIFA is considering banning its use for 2 big reasons:
1. It has been clinically proven to make athletes 145% stronger on average and triples stamina, making it unfair to players who don't use it.
2. These supplements don't have to be used in conjunction with a gym. Users experience massive muscle growth and fat loss without lifting a single weight. The FIFA considers this to be a "cheat" as it requires hardly any effort on the user's part."

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Re: Aussie Rules - 12 Month Suspension for Essendon Players

Post by BigSaint »

Dons swing late change
Image
Joe Daniher has come in for an injured Zac Clarke for today's Good Friday match against North Melbourne. (Photo: AFL Media)
Essendon Football Club can confirm Zac Clarke is a late withdrawal from the side set to face North Melbourne at Marvel Stadium this afternoon.

Joe Daniher has been named to replace Clarke, after the ruckman sustained a calf bleed overnight.

General manager of football Dan Richardson said the late change was an unavoidable situation.

“After presenting fine during the week, Zac suffered a secondary calf bleed overnight and in consultation with our medical team this morning, we’ve subsequently had to rule him out of the clash with North Melbourne,” Richardson said.

“We notified both North Melbourne and the AFL as soon as possible and we thank them for their understanding.

“It was our intention for Joe to play in the VFL this week.

“With injuries to McKernan and Stewart, structurally for our side today, we had to look at the key forward position so the decision was made.

“While unavoidable, the club accepts the AFL’s ruling on this decision and the financial sanction it will impose as a result."
https://www.essendonfc.com.au/news/2019-04-19/dons-swing-late-change
I think the fine will be about $20,000. Football betting is pretty big here & the inclusion of Daniher would have shortened Essendon's odds & may in some people's minds changed the result of the game. Those in "the know" would have had a distinct advantage over the normal punter. :evil:
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