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Demon Angus Brayshaw to return after concussions

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JULY 18: Angus Brayshaw of the Demons in action during the Melbourne Demons training session at Gosch's Paddock on July 18, 2017 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Michael Willson/AFL Media)
Angus Brayshaw trains in a helmet on at Gosch's Paddock on Tuesday
Importantly, he's very keen to get out there and play again
Melbourne high performance manager Dave Misson

MELBOURNE midfielder Angus Brayshaw will make his return to football for the Casey Demons in the VFL on Saturday night after recovering from repeated concussions.

Brayshaw, pick No.3 in the 2014 NAB AFL Draft, has not played since suffering his fourth concussion in 12 months when he sustained a significant head knock while playing for the Demons' VFL affiliate against the Northern Blues on May 14. 

The 21-year-old has not played for seven weeks after the Demons listed him with an indefinite return date following the incident.

Demons high performance manager Dave Misson said Brayshaw and the club were excited ahead of his return at Casey Fields against Essendon's VFL side. 

"It's probably Gus' third or fourth week where he's been training with the group full contact," Misson told melbournefc.com.au.

"Importantly, he's very keen to get out there and play again, as are we to get a quality player back. 

"So he'll be playing down at Casey against the Bombers on Saturday night."

Brayshaw has twice been knocked out this season, one of which was an illegal hit off the ball that resulted in a one-match suspension for North Ballarat player Hayden Walters.

In May last year, he suffered two concussions at VFL level in the space of three weeks.

In the first instance, Brayshaw was concussed against Essendon when an errant kick from a teammate hit him in the head.

The Demon then received a heavy knock at a centre bounce against Sandringham a fortnight later, forcing him to miss the next month.

The Demons have been ultra-cautious with Brayshaw's recovery this year, with the hard-at-it midfielder being slowly integrated into full training over the past month and wearing a helmet in a bid to avoid any further issues.

 

During his time on the sidelines, Melbourne's coaching staff took the opportunity to teach and work with him on his technique when approaching contests.

They found that Brayshaw was predisposed to leading with his head and they have been trying to alter his approach to ensure he leads more with his body to absorb the contact coming his way.

That fundamental type of training has been a process that has taken place across the past five weeks, with specific one-on-one tutelage.

Brayshaw has played 33 matches since being recruited with pick No.3 in the 2014 NAB AFL Draft.

He featured in the Demons' opening two games this season, before being omitted in round three.