Bombers expect Zaharakis to play

19 May 2017 06:35:16 EST

Essendon reckon David Zaharakis will be OK to take on West Coast on Sunday.

The Bombers are also confident skipper Dyson Heppell will be passed fit, despite having injured his hand in a kitchen accident on his birthday.

Zaharakis left training early on Thursday due to illness, but the midfielder - whose 31 touches last week helped the Bombers upset Geelong - is still likely to face the Eagles.

Coach John Worsfold said of him: "He was a little bit ill a day or two ago so we're just easing him back into it ... he'll be fine."

Heppell caused concern for the Bombers camp when he cut his hand on a broken plate.

He was a little bit ill a day or two ago so we're just easing him back into it ... he'll be fine.

John Worsfold

But during training on Thursday the 25-year-old appeared untroubled by the bandaged wound on his left hand.

Worsfold said Joe Daniher's recent improvement in form wasn't down to any specific reason.

The tall forward kicked 1.6 against Melbourne and 3.4 against Richmond in consecutive games, but has since consolidated his improved accuracy with 8.2 in the past two matches.

"Goalkicking isn't about finding a one-size-fits-all routine," said Worsfold. "It's a tough skill, depending on the angle and the distance, but I think the players do it pretty well."

"Each player has a different routine and ... if there are any issues in their technique, we get the right person to address that."

So far neither Essendon nor the Eagles have confirmed changes to their squads for Sunday's Etihad Stadium meeting.

The Bombers have named Craig Bird, Tom Bellchambers and Jackson Merrett in their extended 25-man squad, with West Coast adding Drew Petrie, Jamie Cripps and Jackson Nelson.

Essendon are 7/5 to beat the Eagles, who are 3/5.

The Bombers are 93/100 with an 11.5-points start.

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