James Hird surprised by son Tom’s call to switch to AFL, join Essendon Bombers

Essendon great James Hird says he was “shocked” by his son Tom’s decision to join the Bombers as an category B rookie.

The younger Hird had focused on soccer throughout his teens, including playing for Port Melbourne in Victoria’s NPL and also having a trial in the Netherlands, before joining the Bombers on a two-year deal in March.

Tom Hird at Bombers training last month.Credit:Getty Images

“I think [Tom’s mother] Tania and I were both pretty shocked actually that he chose to go down this path,” former Essendon coach Hird told the Working Through It podcast.

“He’d been going very well in his soccer, both here and overseas so we were a bit taken aback that he wanted to go down that path but he and [general manager of list and recruiting] Adrian Dodoro must have been concocting some plan without us knowing.


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