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Bombers keep season alive with gutsy comeback win


An eight goal to one final team has seen Essendon keep their season alive with a fiery 27-point win over Hawthorn under the roof at Marvel Stadium.

A pulsating last quarter had Marvel Stadium rocking as Bombers fans found their voice after three quarters of scrappy football.

After a slow start, the Bombers remained poised and managed a crucial comeback after being down by 15 points at three-quarter time.

The struggling Dons had managed just one win for the season to date, while the Hawks had been a surprise packet for many sitting 3-4.

Even more impressive, Essendon had to face six changes due to an illness that savaged the club.

Jordan Ridley, Nik Cox, Alec Waterman, Sam Durham Jake Kelly and Matt Guelfi were struck down with the illness while Jake Stringer also missed with injury.

For the Bombers, Peter Wright slotted six goals alongside his eight marks and was supplied well by the ever-potent Darcy Parish (one goal, 32 disposals) and Zach Merrett (one goal, 28 disposals).

Nick Hind (23 disposals, 78 per cent kicking efficiency) would be pleased with his return game from the VFL while Ben Hobbs (one goal, 19 disposals) is starting to put together a good body of work.

Nic Martin continues to stake his claim as one of the best pickups of the offseason with a superb two-goal and 22 disposal game.

Former St Kilda star Nick Dal Santo praised the 21-year-old and stated his importance to the Bombers in just his seventh AFL game.

“He’s in-game number seven and he’s in their best five players as it currently stands, at the (whole) football club,” Dal Santo said on AFL Nation.

Dylan Shiel (15 disposals, six clearances) has been in the headlines recently for his surprise axing in Round 7 and seemed in discomfort after an injury to the left leg left him on the bench for large parts of the game.

2021 mid-season recruit Jai Newcombe was influential in collecting 28 disposals, five clearances, and eight marks, while Darcy Moore continued his consistent start to 2022 with 20 disposals on top of a goal and 11 marks.

In a largely even game, it was the momentum and endurance of the Bombers that set them apart from the Hawks who have now lost three in a row since defeating the Cats impressively on Easter Monday.

The Bombers face the Swans at the SCG and will be hoping to deal a third home loss in a row to the red and the white, while the Hawks seek to end their streak of losses against an in-form Richmond.


Essendon: 2.2, 6.3, 8.10, 16.12 (108)

Hawthorn: 3.7, 8.9, 10.13, 11.15 (81)


Essendon: Wright 6, Martin 2, Francis 2, Hobbs, Baldwin, Caldwell, Parish, Merrett, Perkins

Hawthorn: Gunston 2, Lynch 2, Koschitzke 2, Macdonald, Maginness, Moore, Morrison, Breust


Essendon: P Wright, N Martin, D Parish, Z Merrett, D Heppell, B Hobbs

Hawthorn: J Newcombe, J O’Meara, D Moore, H Morrison, J Sicily


Essendon: n/a

Hawthorn: n/a

Essendon Hawthorn

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