Covering the Goulburn and Murray valleys

Essendon players a hit in Kyabram

Bombers stars delight primary and secondary alike.

July 16, 2014 3:36am

Young Bomber fans Morrie Serra, Sophie Denham and Zavier Briggs meet Paddy Ryder.

Hot off the team’s victory against Collingwood, Essendon Bombers players showed primary school students some of the ropes of AFL during a special visit to the Kyabram Recreation Reserve on Monday.

Almost 500 students from Kyabram P-12, St Augustine’s and Girgarre Primary School were in attendance as they met some of the game’s biggest names and rising stars, and practised their kicking, handballing and bouncing.

Essendon stars in attendance included ruckman Patrick Ryder, Leroy Jetta, Courtenay Dempsey and rising young star Joe Daniher.

Students also engaged in an informal question-and-answer session with the players about their favourite foods, hobbies and football moments.

One cheeky Collingwood fan even quizzed the players on why they beat Collingwood, ‘‘the best team ever’’, to receive the good-humoured response from Patrick Ryder ‘‘Well, we just scored more points than them.’’

All students received a free lunch courtesy of the Essendon Football Club and a lucky few received hats, footballs and other signed merchandise from the club.

The Essendon players also answered questions from Year 11 students at Kyabram P-12 College and St Augustine’s College for 45 minutes, detailing their careers, their training routines, game plans and rituals.

‘‘It’s just something for the kids to look forward to, just to get out of school for a couple of hours and have a bit of fun and meet their favourite footy players,’’ Ryder said.

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