Senior Essendon players have voiced their displeasure at the way Tom Bellchambers’ retirement was handled, according to SEN Chief Sports Reporter Sam Edmund.
The popular Bombers ruckman announced this week that he would hang up the boots after playing 136 games across 12 seasons.
Bellchambers, who has only played seven times this year, hasn’t been in the side since Round 13 and there was some “source of frustration” at the club after he wasn’t given a farewell game against Melbourne on Saturday.
Edmund reported that senior defensive duo Michael Hurley and Cale Hooker were particularly unhappy about the 31-year-old not being selected for one final match.
“There was some angst at Essendon this week and not for the first time this season,” he said on AFL Nation.
“The latest source of frustration centres on Tom Bellchambers, we know he announced his retirement on Tuesday and the tributes have followed as they do.
“He’s much-loved (at Essendon), particular by those teammates who have been through more with him than just getting the four points.
“Bellchambers hasn’t played since Round 13 and there was some anger from some of his senior teammates that he wasn’t given a farewell game against Melbourne.
“My understanding is Michael Hurley and Cale Hooker were among the most vocal and they let their displeasure be known on this, they felt he should’ve been given the chance to bow out with a game to finish the season.
“They thought he should’ve played and he’s not. It doesn’t appear to have ended on a good note for them.”
Essendon ended a disappointing season with a 19-point loss against Melbourne on Saturday afternoon.