Zach Merrett celebrates a goal during the R17 match between Essendon and Adelaide at Marvel Stadium on July 9, 2023. Picture: AFL Photos

ZACH Merrett has hit rarefied air, claiming his fourth Essendon best and fairest award after another stellar season.

The Bombers captain on Thursday night saluted for his fourth Crichton Medal, following his previous wins in 2016, 2019 and 2021.

He won with 211 votes to his name, ahead of second-placed Kyle Langford (191 votes) and third-placed Mason Redman (163) in coach Brad Scott's first season in charge. 

It sees the 28-year-old gun midfielder join the upper echelon of Bombers throughout the club's esteemed history, alongside greats Tim Watson and Simon Madden with four Crichton Medals. 

Only James Hird (five) and Dick Reynolds and Bill Hutchison (seven each) have won more for the club, with Merrett's honour coming after he had claimed his third All-Australian jumper this year. 

Kyle Langford and Zach Merrett celebrate a goal during Essendon's clash against North Melbourne in round 22, 2023. Picture: AFL Photos

Langford's second place is the best finish of his career after a 51-goal season in attack for the Bombers, while half-back Redman came third. Redman was also named by his teammates as the Bombers' most courageous player.

Andrew McGrath placed fourth overall, with Jordan Ridley fifth and Nic Martin in sixth position. Ridley missed six games through injury, stopping him from another finish close to the top after he won the best and fairest as a youngster in 2020.

Crichton Medal top 10

1. Zach Merrett - 211 votes
2. Kyle Langford - 191
3. Mason Redman - 163 
4. Andrew McGrath - 160
5. Jordan Ridley - 150
6. Nic Martin - 146
7. Jye Caldwell - 142
8. Darcy Parish - 137
9. Sam Durham - 120
10. Dyson Heppell - 114