James Hird Banned From Bombers B&F, Facing The Sack

Essendon coach James Hird could be out of a job if he decides to appeal last month’s Federal Court ruling which rejected the club’s claim that the ASADA supplement investigation was unlawful.

Hird will face the axe if he goes against Essendon’s decision not appeal last month’s hearing according to a Herald Sun report, a move the recently reinstated coach has been seriously considering over the last 48 hours.

In a further twist, Hird has been banned from Wednesday night’s club best-and-fairest award ceremony.

Both Essendon and Hird have until October 10 to appeal the decision against the unlawful investigation claim, however the club is believed to have taken strong legal advice not to challenge the Federal Court decision in favour of ending the long-running investigation as soon as possible.  

ASADA announced last week that the 34 current and former players involved in the Essendon supplement scandal will receive show-cause notices, and probable suspensions, if the club chooses not to appeal the decision.

“They’ve been pleading or urging James Hird to change his mind,” 3AW reporter Caroline Wilson said Wednesday night.

“As we speak, I think there’s a vague hope he might, although that hope is becoming slimmer by the moment, that he would change his mind and not appeal.

“I’m told by the club that this is the closest they have come to actually having had enough of James Hird.

“And that they now believe the only way to go is for him to leave.”

2014 interim coach Mark Thompson is the natural candidate to replace Hird in the event of a dismissal, however the two-time premiership coach was linked to the new Gold Coast job on Wednesday following the firing of Guy McKenna.

Due to the timeliness of the Suns’ need to hire a coach ahead of a busy off-season featuring free agency and the AFL draft, a decision on Hird’s future can be expected in the near future. 

Photo: Quinn Rooney/Getty Images