Champion forward Josh Kennedy’s ability to handle the ball at training will be decisive in his bid to face Brisbane this Saturday, however concussed defender Brad Sheppard has joined Tim Kelly in being ruled out of the round 23 clash.
Sheppard suffered delayed concussion from the RAC Derby loss, while Kelly went down mid-game with a medial ligament sprain.
“Tim unfortunately suffered an MCL injury on the weekend to the knee – it was the opposite knee to the one he did earlier in the year, and it’s a significant sprain, which will require several weeks’ rest to improve,” General Manager – Football Craig Vozzo told westcoasteagles.com.au.
“That’s looking like at least a two or three-week injury at this stage.
“It was a nasty one for Brad. He got progressively worse through the game but then post-game in particular, so the doctors have diagnosed as a delayed concussion type scenario.
“We’ll take a really conservative approach and Brad will definitely miss this week and slowly keep him improving and work out the next step from there as he feels better.”
Kennedy courageously returned to the action after sustaining a fractured finger and kicked his third major in the final quarter, and is hopeful of being on the plane to Queensland, while small forward Jamie Cripps (teeth) will be available.
“Josh was pretty brave on the weekend,” Vozzo said.
“The knee actually held up really well from the week before, you might recall we had some trouble going into the game, and then unfortunately he had a fracture of the finger during the game, which was quite a nasty fracture.
“But in the typical Josh Kennedy way he puts the team first, got out there and finished the game really strongly.
“We’ll see how much ball-handling he can do today and a little bit tomorrow and make a call from there.
“Jamie put on a pretty good tackle and the unfortunately copped I think it was David Mundy’s elbow – of course it was accidental on David’s part – but it’s left some significant teeth displacement which he’s working through at the moment.
“He’ll be able to play and completed the game but I think he’ll probably need some dental work at the end of the year or a bit later.”
Star defender Jeremy McGovern also got through the derby under some duress due to a hip injury that has troubled him for most of the year, and the four-time All Australian will be monitored this week ahead of a call on his availability.
“Jeremy has been playing very bravely for a large part of the year with a significant hip problem,” Vozzo said.
“It’s elevated over the last couple of weeks. He was very brave to get through the weekend.
“We’ve got him doing some light duties today at training, see how he pulls up from there and we’ll make a decision on selection after that.”
The Eagles hope mid-season draftee Connor West will be available if he gets through training after some groin trouble which saw him rested from the WAFL after losing his place in the senior side.
Former skipper Shannon Hurn is still another one-to-two weeks away recovering from his hamstring strain, however fellow defender Liam Duggan won’t be seen again this season after surgery on the posterior cruciate ligament in his knee.
“Liam’s had a PCL repair completed yesterday in surgery. We decided on the advice of our doctors that was the best course forward for his long-term health,” Vozzo said.
“We had that performed yesterday and all reports are that it was a successful procedure and it will be a long recovery from here, but he’s got plenty of time over the summer to get that right.”
Meanwhile, rookie Zane Trew’s season is also over due to a back problem, while developing tall Callum Jamieson is facing a stint on the sidelines with a groin complaint.
“Callum unfortunately had a groin injury in the course of the captain’s run last Saturday prior to the WAFL game,” Vozzo said.
“Scans revealed there’s a problem there and he’ll miss this week as well unfortunately.
“Zane has a lower back bone stress injury in that area which we need to take a conservative approach with.
“The decision has been made to end his season, rest him up and get that right.
“It’s a bit like fast bowlers get in the course of their season potentially as well. We just don’t want to make that any worse.”
Brendon Ah Chee Hand 2-3 weeks
Jarrod Cameron Ankle Season
Liam Duggan Knee Season
Shannon Hurn Hamstring 1-2 weeks
Callum Jamieson Groin 1-2 weeks
Tim Kelly Knee 2-3 weeks
Josh Kennedy Finger Test
Jeremy McGovern Hip Test
Brad Sheppard Concussion TBC
Zane Trew Back Season
Connor West Groin Test