Essendon list manager Adrian Dodoro admitted the club’s recruiting staff were pinching themselves the further down the order father-son prospect Alwyn Davey jnr slid in the back-end of the AFL draft.
Alwyn jnr and twin brother Jayden both officially became Essendon players on Tuesday night, with the former taken considerably later than many expected.
Hawthorn bid for Alwyn jnr with pick No.45, which enabled the Bombers to match the bid with ease and lose little draft capital.
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“We were (pinching ourselves) actually,” Dodoro told Fox Footy regarding Alwyn jnr.
“We were pleasantly surprised. We had planned for him to get bid on a bit earlier than what he had been.
“He got through late and we got both the boys and it’s a great night for our club.”
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Alwyn Davey played 100 games for Essendon, which is the minimum threshold required for his sons to be eligible as father-son picks.
“Alwyn snr was a much-loved player and to see his boys grow up in the club and now be on the senior list is an amazing night for our footy club and I’m sure a lot of Essendon fans are going to love seeing these two kids play in the future,” Dodoro said.
Jayden Davey was taken with pick No.54 and will be hoping to show off his considerable talent despite significant setbacks with two knee reconstructions.
Dodoro said Bombers fans should be bullish about what both can bring in years to come.
“Speed and excitement. They’ve got a lot of x-factor,” he said.
“Everyone would’ve seen Alwyn this year, he played for Vic Metro and we had him rated in the top 20 so it’s great to get him where we got him.
“Jayden is really a guy that had he not done his knee probably would’ve been in the first round of this draft, I think a lot of the clubs said that themselves.
“We’re going to rehab him, get him right and hopefully have a very good player.”
Essendon’s other picks were defender Lewis Hayes and midfielder Elijah Tsatas.
In selecting Tsatas with pick No.5, the Bombers overlooked other candidate Mattaes Phillipou, who the club had significant interest in.
Phillipou slid to pick No.10 as a result, joining St Kilda, and shared a brief interaction with Dodoro afterwards as the pair completed media interviews on the first night of the draft.
Asked about the interaction, Dodoro said: “Mattaes has been great throughout the whole process.”
“He just reminded me, he said something like, ‘I hope Elijah’s a good player’. It was great, it was in jest, it was good fun.”
Speaking on SEN on Wednesday morning, Phillipou denied mentioning Tsatas in his conversation with Dodoro.