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Dank opens up on Essendon

By Kim Hagdorn
11 February 2013 07:37PM EST

A CENTRAL figure in shock claims of illicit substance use at Essendon opened up as parents of Bombers players were briefed at Windy Hill.

Controversial high performance sports scientist Stephen Dank told his story on top national current affairs program The 7.30 Report as Bombers parents were briefed on shock allegations of widespread illicit drug use last year.

And Dank opened his explosive interview throwing accusations at other AFL clubs and their training regimes. 

Even 307-gamer and Bombers legendary player Tim Watson, father of reigning Brownlow medallist Jobe, made it to his old headquarters for the parents meeting with Essendon chiefs.

In startling claims, Dank declared that Bombers head coach James Hird and his support staff knew of his substance use and supplements injections with Essendon players last season.

Dank declared that other AFL clubs should be looked at for using similar chemical and training programs with their players.

"It would be foolish to think that Essendon was the only club that was looking at these sort of programs," Dank said.

Asked bluntly if "everyone was aware" in the program at Essendon, the controversial sports training expert answered a frank: "Yes."

He was grilled further, to answere if from "a coach" to Essendon "club management" knew of his program and methods Dank again answered without hesitation, "Yes."

"There we sometimes when a player, was sort of, with me in consultation and there were times when a coach may or may not be present," he added.

"The coaches were well aware of what was happening.

"I guess from our point of view, we just thought because we were introducing a fairly broad range type program that we just wanted to make sure they were informed about what was being undertaken in it's supplement program."

Dank said players were "fully informed" on what was being administered with their process that included injections.

"Yes," he said.

"Particularly in the early stages we'd actually get them to reaffirm that they knew what they were taking and what they were doing.

"So, there was a lot of discussion with the players on that."

Dank expressed suprise that former Essendon players have claimed they were  completely unaware of substances they were taking and being given to take.

"Certainly very, very surprised," Dank said again without hesitation.

"Given the amount of discussions we had with the players.

"Obviously, I'm saying my version of he story is correct.

"We certainly spent a lot of time and even as the season progressed we certainly kept that dialogue going quite strongly."

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