Willys Guns suggested we put together an updated injury list heading into AAMI Community Series. So, I’ve gone and gathered as much information as I could find about current injury complaints and we’ll look at their scope, timeframe and SC implications. Remember that Chaos Theory and the Coaches Box remain the authority for teams and injury updates, keep an eye out.
Lachie WHITFIELD (GWS, $561.1k)
Having spent 9 days in hospital after suffering a bruised liver and only being discharged just the other day, Whitfield’s looking at a 2 – 3 months on the sidelines – let’s be honest, with GWS, it won’t be any less than 3. The immediate repercussion is that Whitfield obviously can’t be selected, but his injury opens the door for Isaac CUMMING (GWS, $288.0k) to perhaps absorb his role and increasing the job security of popular rookie Jacob WEHR (GWS, $117.3k). Assuming that timeframe holds, that puts Whitfield’s return on or around GWS’ bye in June, which makes him an ideal upgrade target if you’ve got the stones.
Jordan RIDLEY (ESS, $547.7k)
Suffered a minor calf injury calf injury recently, but is reportedly but on schedule with his pre-season load and re-joined the main group 3 weeks ago. Given the potentially recurrent nature of calf injuries, just monitor his movement before you start him.
Tom STEWART (GEEL, $538.0k)
Stewart resumed full training on Wednesday after recent quad tightness, monitor as you won’t want him playing Round 1 with reduced TOG. Also note that Cats skipper Joel Selwood said around a month ago that each Cat would have a rest through the year in preparation for finals
Ben PATON (STK, $344.2k)
While not himself directly SC relevant, Ben Paton’s broken leg improves the chance of Thomas HIGHMORE (STK, $117.3k) making his debut this season. As a medium sized defender he fits the bill to replace Paton and would make a juicy D8.
Lachie NEALE (BRIS, $721.8k)
Heard just recently that Neale had sat out the Lions’ past two intraclub games due to a calf injury he suffered at the start of his pre-season. He has resumed full training this week however. Should be fine.
Adam TRELOAR (WBD, $587.6k)
Treloar just aggravated a persistent calf injury which has frequently interrupted his career. This time it’s reportedly only tightness but it’s nevertheless expected to rule the recruit out of Round 1, although the Dog’s medical staff remain optimistic. Not only can you not start him but his absence confound coaches when assessing the Dogs MID set up, atleast one Dogs MID will have their CBAs shaved when Treloar returns.
Mitch DUNCAN ($556.7k)
Notched up a calf setback and another undisclosed “minor issue”. He’s unlikley to play in Round 1, with the Cats likely to take it slow given their depth.
Ben CUNNINGTON ($439.8k)
Set to return from a back injury that saw him miss most of 2020, Cunnington recently suffered a concussion during training. Per the AFL’s new concussion rule, he won’t train for 12 days. If you plan to start him, be sure that he’s still managed to get a sufficient pre-season under his belt
Braydon PREUSS (GWS, $303.0k)
Set for shoulder surgery which will rule him out for 4 – 5 months. However, in a silver lining, Matthew FLYNN (GWS, $123.9k) looks set to debut.
Sean DARCY (FREO, $420.1k)
Not as much to go on here but Darcy’s had a battle with damage to his arcuate ligament in his left knee and been in a leg brace since late January. This has sparked discussion of debuts for either Lloyd MEEK (FREO, $123.9k) or popular R3 loophole Josh TREACY (FREO, $102.4k) to either outright cover for Darcy or play second fiddle to relieve him. Two weeks ago Freo said Darcy should play Round 1, no word since.
Patrick DANGERFIELD (GEEL, $611.9k)
Dangerfield’s been battling a groin issue all pre-season, having travelled interstate to see a specialist. He’s been on a modified load, which he’s apparently had no problems with, and just yesterday the tone of the Cats and Dangerfield himself is markedly more optimistic, with both stating he’ll be fine for the AAMI Series and Round 1. Sounds a little rosy, so still monitor him.
Rowan MARSHALL (STK, $557.2k)
Copped a foot stress injury two days ago, which will sideline him for 1 month and cause him to miss Round 1 at a minimum. It’s unclear how Ryder’s tracking at this stage but assume he solo rucks with a second fiddle from the reserves until Marshall’s back. Can’t start him.
Isaac HEENEY (SYD, $454.5k)
Recovering from his ankle surgery last year and under an injury cloud of late. Good news is participated in the Swans’ scratch match last week and is increasing his workload. If he looks limber, you can start him but he note his minutes and role.
Jeremy CAMERON (GEEL, $388.1k)
Had hamstring issues recently but reportedly back to main training with Stewart. Watch his mobility and fitness.
Lance FRANKLIN (SYD, $312.0k)
Lot of ambiguity around Franklin currently. Resumed training but the Swans are playing it slow and not putting a timeframe on his return. Heeney could be restricted to more exclusively FWD duties if Franklin doesn’t return soon, be cognizant of that.
Ben Brown (MELB,$260.3k)
Going under the knife for knee surgery, expected return between Round 4 – 6 according to the Dees. Given Brown has yet to play for the Dees, there shouldn’t be any structural repercussions.
As a disclaimer, I’ve put this together based on the all the available information I could find but bear in mind there’s not as much reporting on injuries at stage. That, in conjunction with a focus on SC relevant injuries, mean there may be some minor omissions.
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