Jake Stringer on the track during the Bombers' pre-season camp in Coffs Harbour. (Photo: AFL Photos)

Forward Jake Stringer says the club’s younger players have shone during the Bombers’ tough pre-season camp in Coffs Harbour. 

Stringer said the camp had seen a number of younger players flourish in their skill and fitness development throughout the team’s gruelling field, beach and gym sessions.

Among a host of youngsters who’ve dazzled on the training track, Stringer singled out two regular-team members who have impressed in Coffs. 

“There’s been quite a few that have gone really well so far,” Stringer said.

“Darcy Parish is training really well, and Andrew McGrath is also going really well.

“All the younger boys have really improved, so hopefully going into practice matches, they can take it into that.” 


With the Bombers spending four days on the Northern NSW coast to help their preparations for the upcoming season, another major positive which has emerged from the camp is the ability for the playing group to get to know each other better.

Stringer echoed teammate Andrew McGrath’s sentiments, saying the amount of quality time the players have been spending together has been a nice facet of the camp. 

“We’re up here to spend time together and connect, but most importantly, get up here and do some work and learn, making sure we’re improving and getting ready for the season,” he said.

“(On the camp) you get to spend 24 hours a day with these guys and get to learn a bit more about them other than going into training and then going home. 

“You spend a bit of time having dinner together and doing little activities. It’s a wonderful idea and the boys have really embraced it so far.” 


With the Coffs Harbour camp coming to a close on Thursday, the Bombers will return to The Hangar with their eyes firmly focused on preparing themselves for match practice as pre-season games draw near. 

Stringer said it was an exciting time to be a player with the start of the season now only around the corner.

“That’s the beauty of it (pre-season camp), games are not too far away,” he said. 

“Once we finish here and get back, it’s only a few weeks until we start practice matches (and) that’s the most exciting thing for footballers is when we start playing.”

Essendon will begin its Marsh Community Series campaign against West Coast at Mineral Resources Park in WA on February 27, before facing Geelong in Colac on March 9.