Bombers are in form now, says Hird - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Bombers are in form now, says Hird

By Robert Grant 01/07/2005 03:51:04 PM Comments (0)

It's taken more than half a season, but Essendon captain James Hird has warned that the Bombers finally have their best AFL side of the year in place.

Hird said that after a lot of experimentation in the first half of 2005, Essendon was ready to challenge for a place in the top eight.

The Bombers, who meet the seventh-placed Kangaroos at Telstra Dome, are in 13th place on the table but Hird said a couple of wins would put them in the mix for September.

However he admitted Essendon was still in a perilous situation and could not afford to slip up in any of the remaining nine games.

While Essendon battled with form, coach Kevin Sheedy was trying to formulate a competitive team by trialling young players.

"Sheeds has thrown a fair few players into the side in the first half of the year ... having guys who hadn't played a lot of footy, trying to get our best team - to work out what it is," Hird said.

"We really didn't know at the start of the year what it is and luckily we've had a couple of young guys jump up.

"We've got a fair bit of pace and that's always exciting to play with guys who can run and carry the footy and use it properly.

"We've got those players in the side now and with Fletch (fullback Dustin Fletcher) coming back this week after missing with the flu I think we've probably got our strongest side for the year."

Among the youngsters who have impressed in recent weeks are Andrew Lovett, Angus Monfries and Nathan Lovett-Murray.

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