James Hird’s father says his son is doing “fine”, as the former Essendon coach and dual Premiership player recovers from an overdose in a healthcare facility.
Allan Hird, James Hird’s father, spoke with Melbourne radio station 3AW on Tuesday morning, where he branded the AFL as “bullies”.
He also said he had no idea his son was suffering any emotional difficulties.
“It did come out of the blue [the medical scare]. I had no inkling,” Allan Hird said. “I don’t really know what the cause is, that’s really between Jim and God, I don’t want to make any overt connection, I don’t believe that it’s appropriate.”
3AW host Tony Jones said after the interview that Allan Hird was not paid for speaking on air and that he had contacted the radio station himself to tell his side of the story.
“My daughter has been keeping me regularly informed,” he said of his son’s condition.
“I’m in Brisbane, I’m coming down shortly to see him but my daughter has been keeping me informed … He’s fine.”
Allan Hird, 70, slammed the AFL for its role in the supplements saga which resulted in James Hird being suspended for a whole AFL season. James eventually resigned from his job as Essendon coach in late 2015.
“They’re bullies,” Allan Hird said of the AFL.
“He [James Hird] put too much trust in the club doing the right thing. He put too much trust in the AFL. He put too much trust in our system of government,” he said.
“If he had his time again, he would have done it differently.”
“James has never been charged with anything, other than this nebulous charge of bringing the game into disrepute.”
Allan Hird said he did not feel it was his place to give James advice.
“I listened to him. .. but he’s a man, he’s a not a boy. It’s better to listen to people,” he said.
“He went through and did what he thought was the right thing because he kept trusting people.
If you’re going through a difficult time you can call Lifeline (131 114), or beyondblue (1300 224 636), or visit lifeline.org.au or beyondblue.org.au