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Michael Hartley

Last played for Hawthorn Hawks in 2021
Games: 49     Born: June 7, 1993     Origin: Sydney University
Playing Height: 198cm     Playing Weight: 104kg     Position: Defender
First Drafted: Round 7, Pick #87 2011 Rookie Draft by Collingwood Magpies
Last Drafted: Round 1, Pick #2 2019 Pre-Season Draft by Hawthorn Hawks
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Michael Hartley Biography

Tuesday, 3 December 2019
Hawks pre-season draftee Michael Hartley says he left the Bombers after Hawthorn offered him a better two-year deal.

"I have a young daughter and I'm getting married in January. So I just thought about my family and, in all honesty, sticking in the AFL as long as possible, and it sounds horrible but to try and get as much money as I can for my daughter as she grows up," Hartley said.

"That's where we're at, unfortunately. I loved my time at Essendon and I love the club, but the Hawks came along and gave me a little bit longer."

With the Hawks having a talented backline, Hartley concedes the hard work is ahead of him.

"There are a couple of big dogs here already, but I'll back myself to have a good crack," Hartley said.

"I'm happy to do whatever the team needs. If I start in the VFL, I'm happy to start there, and hopefully I'll just work away, chip away, and get the form up."

Friday, 29 November 2019
Hawthorn pick up Michael Hartley with the second pick in the 2019 pre-season draft.
Friday, 8 November 2019
Michael Hartley is set to join a third AFL club after leaving the Bombers, with Hawthorn being his likely destination.
Friday, 19 October 2018
Michael Hartley signs a one-year contract extension with Essendon to remain at the club in 2019.

"It's extremely exciting to be a part of this club at this time. We are a young, up-and-coming group that will give the competition a good shake up next year," Hartley said.

"I am excited to get stuck into pre-season and work on my consistency in playing good football for longer periods."

Wednesday, 28 March 2018
Michael Hartley says being delisted by Collingwod in 2013 was a blessing in disguise.

Hartley would go on to win Coburg's best and fairest, while making the VFL team of the year during his two years away from AFL football.

"It's amazing how much I matured in that two years I was out of a club. With that experience I now know how hard it is to work all day and then go to training. When I was at Collingwood I took being in the AFL for granted, so now that I'm back I want to make sure I keep it," Hartley said.

After two years of being in and out of the Bombers' senior side, Hartley hopes to consolidate his spot in 2018.

"In 2016 I was just trying to survive. I was playing on some good players and big fellas and it was coming in pretty hot and heavy at times," he said.

"Last year I found it a bit hard, with the guys coming back, I had to play a bit differently and I got dropped a couple of times which wasn't the best.

"This year I thought, 'I've done my two years as an apprenticeship, and this year I've got to step up a bit and get a bit more of the footy'. I want to use my kicking a bit more and be a bit more attacking."

Sunday, 11 June 2017
Michael Hartley currently leads the league in spoils for 2017 but says he still needs to have an attacking side to his game.

"Obviously, being a key defender, I probably defend first and attack second," Hartley said.

"I just have to work on my offensive game a bit more and getting up the ground a bit not just defending first, then chilling deep in the 50.

"The coaches reckon I've got a half-decent kick, so hopefully I'll try and get it in my hands and then see how we go from there. It's slowly getting better, but I'm still pretty nervous leaving the big forwards deep."

Monday, 5 September 2016
Michael Hartley has been rewarded for his breakout season in Essendon's backline by signing a new two-year contract that will keep him at the club until the end of 2018.

"The playing group is in a really good place, the next few years are going to be exciting for the football club and it's great to be a part of it," Hartley said in a club statement.

Thursday, 7 April 2016
Seven years after signing a New South Wales scholarship with Collingwood, Michael Hartley finally makes his AFL debut for Essendon in a stirring win against Melbourne.

"Everyone was screaming, all the fans and the families, all the support staff," Hartley said.

"There were just smiles on all the faces and it was awesome to be a part of it."

Saturday, 2 April 2016
Michael Hartley makes his AFL debut for Essendon at the MCG with 14 disposals (9 kicks and 5 handballs), 6 marks, 5 tackles and a goal in a 13-point win over Melbourne.
Wednesday, 25 November 2015
Essendon select Michael Hartley with pick No.68 in the 2015 NAB AFL Draft.

"We were always going to take Hartley as one our late picks. He had a great year at Coburg, he's come through some injury issues and he's proved he can be a very good key position player as well," Bombers list manager Adrian Dodoro said.

Thursday, 27 August 2015
Former Collingwood rookie Michael Hartley could get a second chance in the AFL later this year.

Since being delisted by Collingwood, Hartley has put his injury problems behind him and produced two outstanding seasons with Coburg in the VFL.

Hartley will participate in this year's Victorian state combine on October 11, an event to which players are only invited if at least two AFL clubs have expressed interest in them.

"I still have a bit to offer, I feel. I would like to have a real crack at it because I didn't get much of a crack at it before," Hartley says.

"I'm probably not aerobically amazing, I'm more of a jumping sort of player, but if I can just work on the aerobic stuff a little bit more hopefully that will help me."

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