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Mav Weller in the frame for Saints call-up

Rookie-listed Mav Weller could get the call up for St Kilda this weekend - ${keywords}
Rookie-listed Mav Weller could get the call up for St Kilda this weekend
We can't afford to have any passengers ... that was also an issue last week
Alan Richardson

ST KILDA is considering promoting in-form rookie Mav Weller ahead of Saturday's clash against Hawthorn after a string of long-term injuries created room for the former Gold Coast midfielder.

Weller has impressed as a run-with player in the VFL and coach Alan Richardson said he could be called on to help No.1 tagger Tom Curren as the Saints look at options to shut down the Hawks' gun midfielders.

The 22-year-old could be elevated to the senior list as a replacement for injured half-back Nathan Wright (leg) who is sidelined for 10-12 weeks, or defender Sam Gilbert, who is not recovering from a stress fracture in his foot as planned.

Match preview: Hawthorn v St Kilda

The Saints will need to make a change to the team that lost to the Brisbane Lions in Wellington, with rookie half-forward Eli Templeton suffering a broken arm that could rule him out for the rest of the season.

Defender Sam Fisher won't be considered after travelling to New Zealand, but will return from a hamstring injury in the VFL.

"He came with us to New Zealand and we were really hopeful he would be able to play but he didn't quite come up in the training sessions," Richardson said on Thursday.

"He's a really important player but he has missed too much footy now, so he'll play VFL (with) fairly significant minutes and he might be a chance for the following week.

"Mav Weller's had some really impressive performances running with and controlling opposition in the VFL and he's just about ready to go.

"It might be that he gets an opportunity this week. If not, it'll certainly be in the coming weeks if his form continues.

"For most of our games we've matched up reasonable strongly on the players that we think are the oppositions key players. Tom Curren's done a really good job for us."

Richardson said the Saints, who have trained well this week after the loss to the Lions, looked forward to running their young players opposed to the Hawks' premiership stars.

He said a lack of effort was unlikely to be an issue this week after a slow start in Wellington cost the team.

"We've addressed that in terms of reviewing really strongly and you can only get out on the track and have a go at your training and the guys were really quite impressive," he said.

"We had a really disappointing game against the Crows (in round four) and responded really well against the Bombers the week after.

"We think we can be competitive against most teams in the competition if we get really good effort and contribution from every player.

"We can't afford to have any passengers ... that was also an issue last week."

Richardson said the young Saints' priority against Hawthorn would be to defend strongly and limit the Hawks' rebound from the back half, which is "probably better than any team in the competition".

"If we don't get our team defence strong then we'll struggle to keep them to a losing score, so that'll be a real focus for us," he said.

"We're not focusing on winning or losing, we just want to get our method right."

Twitter: @AFL_Nathan