Peter Wright celebrates a goal during Essendon's clash against St Kilda in round 14, 2022. Picture: AFL Photos

ESSENDON key forward Peter Wright has claimed the Bombers' best and fairest, with the goalkicker finishing his career-best season with the Crichton Medal.

Wright kicked 53 goals this season in his second year at the Bombers and became the first Essendon key forward to win the best and fairest since Joe Daniher in 2017 – the player Wright was brought in to replace at the end of 2020.

The 26-year-old former Gold Coast Sun finished on 242 votes, ahead of three-time best-and-fairest winner Zach Merrett, who polled 230 votes after missing three games through injury.


In third place was Matt Guelfi, with the pressure forward being rewarded for the best season of his career by finishing on 211 votes. Guelfi had a terrific campaign in the Bombers' forward line and earned a new two-year contract. 

Wright had six games where he booted four or more goals in 2022, including a six-goal performance in round eight against Hawthorn and five goals in the Bombers' win over Brisbane in round 17.

He was the focal point of an at times depleted forward line, with injuries leaving the Bombers without Jake Stringer and Harrison Jones at stages through their bottom-four season.

Rebounding defender Mason Redman finished in fourth position in the best and fairest and was named the Bombers' best clubman and most improved, with marking backman and 2020 winner Jordan Ridley in fifth place. First-year midfielder Nic Martin came in eighth position after his impressive debut season.

Mason Redman in action during Essendon's clash against Greater Western Sydney in round 21, 2022. Picture: AFL Photos

Defender Jayden Laverde was named Essendon's most courageous player. 

2022 Crichton Medal

1. Peter Wright - 242 votes
2. Zach Merrett - 230
3. Matt Guelfi - 211
4. Mason Redman - 209
5. Jordan Ridley - 191
6. Jayden Laverde - 180
7. Jake Kelly - 179
8. Nic Martin - 164
=9. Darcy Parish - 155
=9. Dylan Shiel - 155
=9. Nick Hind - 155
12. Andrew McGrath - 141