Young guns Oscar Allen and Jackson Nelson are in the selection mix for West Coast's semi-final clash with Geelong after overcoming minor setbacks.
Allen missed the elimination final win over Essendon after succumbing to knee soreness, while Nelson was taken from the field following a fourth-quarter head clash with Bomber Mason Redman.
General manager of football Craig Vozzo said the pair was fit, firing and vying for a spot in the starting side.
“Young Ozzie had a knee issue last week – it was general soreness really – but it’s improved quite markedly through the week and he trained well today, so he’s available for selection,” Vozzo said.
“With Jackson we followed all of our usual medical protocols and testing that occurs post-game, and our medical staff have given the all-clear for Jackson to play this week. That’s good news and he’s available to be picked.”
While Nelson bounced back from his head knock, that was not the case for emerging midfielder Matt Allen, who was concussed during the WAFL Eagles’ semi-final loss to Claremont on Sunday.
The fourth-year Eagle’s head collided with the turf as he tackled Tigers’ onballer Jye Bolton during the second quarter. He was helped from the ground and did not return.
Vozzo said Allen would need at least one week to recover from the incident.
“Unfortunately Matt Allen versus Claremont copped a very heavy knock, I think it was in the second quarter – early on in that quarter – and pulled up worse for wear,” Vozzo said.
“He’s slowly recovering from some concussion symptoms, so he’ll be out for the week, possibly two. But he’s recovering well.”
Another budding onballer, Brayden Ainsworth, is preparing to go under the knife to resolve a hamstring ailment that hampered the back end of his season.
“With Brayden Ainsworth, he’s fought on really well in the back part of the year,” Vozzo said.
“He’s had a tendon issue with his hamstring and where that inserts into the knee and it flared up post the West Perth game, which made him unavailable for selection last week.
“We’ve decided, given that the WAFL Eagles were knocked out of the finals last week, to get that repaired as soon as possible.
“He’ll have some minor surgery later this week so that can start his pre-season as early as possible.”
In more positive news, Daniel Venables set foot on the training track for the first time in more than four months today.
Vozzo said the club was thrilled to have the premiership forward back on deck, albeit in a limited capacity.
“It’s great to have Dan Venables back at the footy club,” he said.
“We gave him a rest, a holiday away from the club for a period, which has really helped him refresh and now he’s back with the guys doing some really light training.
“He’ll have real low-key training sessions as we end our season and then he’ll get ready for a big pre-season and go from there.”