Parish signs on

Star Essendon midfielder Darcy Parish has agreed to terms on a new two-year deal.

The contract extension will see Parish remain in the red and black until at least the end of 2023.

The 23-year-old has had a stellar season, claiming the Anzac Medal, Yiooken Award and Tom Wills Medal for his best-on-ground performances in the Anzac Day, Dreamtime and Powercor Country Festival blockbuster games respectively.

Ahead of round 17, Parish ranks first in the League for centre clearances per game, second for goal assists, third for effective disposals, third for inside 50s per game, and fourth for disposals.

Drafted from the Geelong Falcons at pick No.5 in the 2015 national draft, Parish burst on to the scene with a 25-disposal performance in round one, 2016.

He earned a NAB AFL Rising Star nomination just one round later for his match-winning performance against Melbourne.

Parish has been a mainstay in the Bombers’ line-up across his six seasons, playing 108 of a possible 123 games.

He said he was proud to remain a Bomber.

“We’re building something pretty special at Essendon and it was a very easy decision to sign on again,” Parish said.

“We have a really clear plan under ‘Truck’ (senior coach Ben Rutten) and Dyson’s (captain Dyson Heppell) leadership and we’re all really determined and hungry to build on what we’ve started this year, but we know we have a long way to go.  

“It’s been a really enjoyable place to be this season. I think that is really evident to our members and supporters and we have a lot of growth in us as a developing team. I’m excited to continue to build my own game and to see what’s in store as we continue to develop as a playing group over the coming years.” 

General manager of list and recruiting Adrian Dodoro said the extension was an apt reward for Parish’s season. 

“We’re really pleased for Darcy and we’re delighted he will remain with us in the red and black,” Dodoro said. 

“There’s no doubt that with the opportunity that presented itself this season in our midfield, Darcy has made the most of his chance and has put together an outstanding year to date and is on his way to establishing himself as a premier midfielder across the competition.

“Yet at only 23 years of age, we know Darcy still has growth left in his game and we look forward to seeing his contribution to our developing playing group over at least the next two years.”