James Hird's son suffers crushing blow in debut season

Tom Hird is set to miss the AFL season with a stress fracture in his foot. Pic: Getty

James Hird's son Tom has suffered a major setback in his first season at Essendon, with a foot injury set to rule him out for the rest of 2020.

After experiencing some soreness in recent days, scans have revealed a navicular stress fracture in the 19-year-old's foot.

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"Tom will rest his foot for the next period and we will continue to monitor his progress but it will be a longer-term injury," Bombers football manager Dan Richardson said.

Tom’s father had a history of foot injuries

"It's a disappointing setback for Tom after his start with the club in recent months, and with the nature of navicular injuries, we will continue to take full caution approaching Tom's rehabilitation over the coming weeks."

James himself was struck down by foot injuries during his legendary career with the Bombers, spending lengthy periods on the sidelines in the late-1990s before leading Essendon to the 2000 premiership.

James Hird suffered a similar injury to that of his son during his own playing days. Pic: Getty

Tom signed with the Bombers as an AFL category B rookie in March.

The younger Hird had focused on soccer throughout his early teens, including playing for Port Melbourne in Victoria's NPL and also having a trial in the Netherlands.

Tom is the fourth generation of the Hird family at Essendon, following Allan Snr, Allan Jnr and James. His sister Stephanie has also been involved in the Bombers VFLW program.