The key duo will stay at Windy Hill beyond the 2015 AFL season.
AFL club Essendon today announced the re-singing of key duo Michael Hibberd and Heath Hocking.
Hibberd has signed a three-year contract extension and Hocking has signed on for another two years.
Hibberd is perhaps in career-best form and said despite the fact he had good offers from other clubs, he wanted to stay at the Bombers because of the club’s tight-knit group.
“This club has stood by me throughout my career, they gave me my chance to play AFL footy and I couldn’t see myself playing anywhere else,” Hibberd said.
“I’ve got a lot of good mates here, we’re a tight group and we want to play and win finals.”
“We definitely believe we have the ability and the talent but that can only get you so far. It’s about consistent effort and we know we have to perform if we want to be a part of a successful era at the club.”
Hocking, now a senior leader at the club, echoed Hibberd’s thoughts.
“I’m really proud to play for this great club, a club I supported since I was a kid. To ‘live the dream’ everyday is obviously a great honour and one I don’t take for granted,” Hocking said.
“This group is on the verge of playing some really exciting football, and if we continue to work hard and play the Essendon brand of football, who knows how far that will take us.”
Senior coach Mark Thompson said he was impressed by the commitment of both players and that they should be commended on their loyalty.
“The ability to retain this team of players is a great sign of the strength and direction of our club. Hibbo (Michael Hibberd) and Heath are important leaders for the football club and it’s great to see them re-sign,” Thompson said.
“Hibbo is in terrific form, the best form of his career and Heath is just a competitor, a fierce competitor, who hates losing. In fact, they both hate losing.”
“Our players have the best facility, and our job is to give them the opportunity to be the best at what they do. I think it’s great to see this talented and resilient group of young men develop and mature together.”