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Hartley knocks back Essendon offer, looks elsewhere

Defender Michael Hartley has knocked back a contract offer from Essendon and decided to chance his arm at continuing his AFL career elsewhere.

After spending a couple of years on Collingwood’s rookie list, Essendon picked up Hartley with selection No.68 in the 2015 draft.

Michael Hartley (right) has rejected a one-year deal from Essendon and will look elsewhere.

Michael Hartley (right) has rejected a one-year deal from Essendon and will look elsewhere.Credit:Getty Images

Hartley was a regular fixture in the Bombers’ line-up in his first two years with them, including the ill-fated 2016 campaign which was ruined by a raft of doping-related suspensions to star players, playing 37 of a possible 45 games.

But he struggled for opportunities in his last two years at Tullamarine, managing just seven appearances for the Bombers in that time for a career total of 44.

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