The Bombers are delighted to announce the signing of train-on player Alec Waterman to a one-year deal.
Waterman will be listed on the club’s Rookie A list for the 2021 season.
The 24-year-old was invited to train with the Bombers in February after being scouted from WAFL side Claremont, following a year in which he claimed the club’s best and fairest award as a medium forward in the Tigers’ run to the grand final.
A son of West Coast 1992 and ‘94 premiership player Chris, Waterman will strive to impress at his second AFL club after initially being a father-son selection for the Eagles in 2014, a stint which was cut short to two seasons after a serious bout of glandular fever robbed the West Australian of playing senior football.
A WA under-18s representative in 2013 and ‘14, Waterman has turned himself from a prolific inside midfielder to a damaging forward, impressing in Essendon’s recent practice match against Carlton with a game-high four goals.
His efforts followed a near best-afield display a week earlier in Essendon’s match simulation session, where he booted two majors and had several goal assists, using his 88kg frame to impose himself on contests.
Waterman said he was happy for another chance at AFL level.
“I’m over the moon to have signed with Essendon,” Waterman said.
“To come over here to Melbourne and win a contract with the Bombers is unbelievable, and I’m very thankful to the club for offering me a spot on the rookie list.
“I feel like I have a lot to prove now that I’ve got another crack at AFL footy. I’m just so excited to hopefully get a clean run at it and put my best foot forward as I know I’ve got a lot to offer as a player at senior level.”
General manager of list and recruiting Adrian Dodoro said the club was excited to secure Waterman for the upcoming season.
“We’re rapt to have offered Alec a deal for 2021,” Dodoro said.
“We’ve been impressed by Alec since he arrived at the club in February, where he’s clearly demonstrated an ability to fit comfortably into an AFL environment and contribute to our side.
“He possesses a body which is ready for the rigours of AFL football, and he showed in the most recent practice match against the Blues that he has an innate ability for a mid-forward role, something which he played so well in during the WAFL last year when he booted 26 goals in 10 games for Claremont.
“It’s a fantastic story to see him get another chance at AFL level after illness hurt his first go at it with West Coast, so we’re looking forward to seeing Alec make his mark in 2021.”
This news is brought to you by Orchard HRO, the club's official recruitment and list management partner.