The 23rd edition of the James Hird Academy (JHA) newsletter has arrived.

In another challenging year navigating the COVID-19 pandemic, 2021 marked Harmit Singh's first full season as JHA head coach.

Singh oversaw two development camps undertaken at the NEC Hangar this year, and in this edition provides insights into his experiences and how the JHA's current crop of talent is progressing.

This edition also includes interviews with Next Generation Academy prospects Isaac Kako and Ryan Eyre (brother of senior-listed Bomber Josh) following their impressive 2021 campaigns.


Established in 2010, the JHA is a junior development program that aims to identify, attract and nurture young players from non-traditional AFL regions, international zones and potential father-son draft avenues. 

The academy plays a vital role in tracking and aiding each member’s development through to drafting age, with the ultimate goal of securing a place on Essendon’s senior list.

One of the JHA’s founding principles is to continue to uphold and bolster the strong father-son tradition that has played such an important part throughout the history of the Bombers.