Dyson Heppell delivered a very targeted message to Essendon’s critics after the Bombers took a miraculous victory over the Hawks.
Essendon captain Dyson Heppell told critics to “jam it” after his club’s incredible win over Hawthorn on Saturday night.
The Bombers lost five players to illness before the opening and most judges expected them to fall back to a seventh loss from eight games in what had been a horror season thus far.
But Heppell and Co. held steady in taking what he described as an “incredible” win from 16.12 (108) to 11.15 (81).
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Essendon has been hammered from all angles and came under fire last month for laughing at opponents after a heavy loss to Fremantle – but Heppell had a blunt response to anyone who doubted his team’s desire to win.
“‘Truck’ (coach Ben Rutten) gave me a bit of a buzz after lunch and said, ‘We’re on some shaky water this arvo and some guys have gone down,'” Heppell told Channel 7 in a statement. post game interview.
“But the guys that came in, just their energy and attitude and willingness to play their part. The guys almost came in with a – well, you’re talking about smiling, anyone can block it, I’m telling you what, to tell us to stop smiling.
“We came in and there was just a great atmosphere in the rooms and produced a fantastic performance.
“You come into a game with a little bit of feel and feeling and I’m so proud of the attitude the guys have held throughout the period. There has been a lot of noise from outside, but inside the four walls it was just an incredible environment for the conditions we were in.
“To show up, with (five) guys late with illness — it’s just an incredible effort.”
Not only did the Bombers have to overcome a late reshuffle, but they followed Hawthorn at every change and put up a remarkable fight in the final quarter to win by 27 points.
Two hopeful Rising Star led their side from the front, but it was Nic Martin who finally topped Jai Newcombe’s best performance.
Trailing 15 at the last substitution, the Bombers needed the first goal of the last quarter and got it thanks to a set shot from Kaine Baldwin to narrow the margin to 10 points.
Martin, who is arguably Essendon’s most impressive player, came alive and scored a quick goal before setting up Peter Wright for his fourth major.
Marvel Stadium was entranced when Essendon fans thought Mason Redman had put the Bombers in charge, but Wright had flung Sam Frost to the ground on the goal line to cost the Dons the six points.
A long ball to the top of Essendon’s goal square, fell a few minutes later at the feet of Zach Merrett, who couldn’t bend down to pick it up, but like a fluke the ball bounced off his shin for a goal and the Bombers led.
If the Bombers’ faithful didn’t already believe, they were when Wright ran a ball over the back onto the wing, sauntered forward and kicked a goal from 55 yards on the run to lift his side nine points.
A minute later, Aaron Francis sealed the deal and an unlikely win at Essendon.
“This will be an all-time win,” former Western Bulldogs star Luke Darcy told Channel 7.
“The Marvel at Marvel.”
With James Mottershead, NCA NewsWire
Originally published as ‘Jam it’: Essendon captain delivers blunt slapdown in post-match interview