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Wednesday, March 3, 2021 - 11:19 AM


Powerful forward and E.B. Cook medallist Alec Waterman has added another chapter to his amazing football journey, with the former Tiger set to fulfil his AFL dream after signing a one-year deal with the Essendon Bombers.

The 24-year-old kicked a game-high four goals in a practice match against Carlton last week and will be listed on the club’s Rookie A list for the 2021 season.

The deserving opportunity is fitting recognition for the professional Waterman, who dominated the WAFL last year and has already made an impression during his short time in red and black.

“I’m over the moon to have signed with Essendon,” Waterman told the club’s website.

“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.”

Glandular fever and a post-viral fatigue illness initially cruelled Waterman’s chances of playing in the AFL after he was drafted by the West Coast Eagles as a father-son selection in 2014.

He then slowly but surely returned to his beloved Claremont Tigers and made an inspirational return through the Reserves in 2018, before making his League debut in 2019.

After another really good pre-season” leading into a shortened 2020 campaign, Waterman flourished in the forward line and won the leading goalkicker award, with his 26 majors in 10 games featuring six hauls of three goals or more, including seven in Claremont’s two finals.

The breakout season saw Waterman win Claremont’s fairest-and-best award, and now his perseverance, work ethic, and irresistible form have presented the accurate and thumping left-footer with another chance at the highest level, and he is willing to grab it with both hands.

“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,” Waterman said.

Essendon 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 told the club’s website.

“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.”

The Claremont Football Club congratulates Alec and wishes him all the best for his exciting journey.