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West Coast Eagles

SJOG Injury Report: Barrass grounded

SJOG Health Care Injury Update: Round 6 General Manager of Football Craig Vozzo takes us through the players currently on modified programs

West Coast will be without Tom Barrass for a significant stint after the key defender presented with a stress-related foot injury last week.

Click here to view the St John of God Health Care Injury List

The club gave Barrass every opportunity to prove his fitness for Friday’s clash with Port Adelaide, but the 21-year-old failed to get up and was replaced in the starting 22 by emergency Will Schofield.

General manager of football Craig Vozzo said the club was seeking clarity on the severity of Barrass’ injury, but he feared the dependable defender might be sidelined for several weeks.

“Tom had a mid-foot problem after the (RAC Derby) and it reared itself last week,” Vozzo said.

“We thought we would treat it conservatively with a six-day break, he didn’t do a lot of training and we thought we’d give it maximum time to be able to get to the line for the game against Port Adelaide on Good Friday. Unfortunately it wasn’t quite right.

“Subsequently we had some more testing done and we’re not confident it’s going to be a short-term problem.

“He’s seeing a specialist tomorrow and then our medical team will gather (more information) and give us some advice as to the likely time out. We’re fearing that it’s going to be a reasonable period out of the game unfortunately.”

In more positive news, livewire small forward Willie Rioli (foot) is just four weeks away from returning to play.

Vozzo said the third-year Eagle was ramping up his training loads, particularly his running program.

“He’s progressed from doing gym work on to doing some running work (on the) Alter-G and a little bit on-ground now and holding up really well through each phase of his rehabilitation,” Vozzo said.

“We’re still predicting probably four more weeks before he returns to play, but at this stage he’s tracking positively.”

Jake Waterman is also set to return this week after missing the WAFL Eagles’ clash with Subiaco due to a minor hamstring strain.

The 20-year-old only needs to get through Thursday’s main training session to be available for selection this weekend.

“Jake pulled up sore post the Peel game at Optus. He kicked five that day, but unfortunately came off a little bit ginger with a hamstring issue, which we subsequently had scanned,” Vozzo said.

“We looked at the result of the MRI and it showed a lower-grade strain of that hamstring. We gave him all the way to (Friday’s) game to see if he could recover in time, but given the six-day break we decided to take the conservative approach.

“We are confident he will be available this week, but it will come down to main training on the Thursday.”