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'Trial and error' for Eagles star on injury return

Elliot Yeo is hopeful of being ready for the AFLX competition - AFL,West Coast Eagles,Elliot Yeo
Elliot Yeo is hopeful of being ready for the AFLX competition

REIGNING West Coast best and fairest Elliot Yeo remains uncertain of the timeline for his recovery from a hip injury, but is hopeful of being available for the AFLX next month.

Yeo, 24, hurt his right hip in the final weeks of the Eagles' campaign in a year in which he played all but one game as they made it to the second week of finals.

The All Australian was largely confined to rehab before Christmas and will begin gradually increasing his workload depending on how his body responds.

"It's just one of those things that's a trial-and-error thing to see how it pulls up and go from there," Yeo told reporters at Lathlain Park on Monday.

He has been able to complete longer distance running to maintain his fitness but has been kept away from sprint work.

"It (hip) catches and pinches at certain times and I feel it a little bit here and there. Certain movements tend to grab it and it just sort of feels a little bit different to how it normally should feel," Yeo said.

"Hopefully it's all good now. The two weeks (off) has definitely helped and hopefully I can progress through."

West Coast's plays AFLX on Thursday, February 15, and Yeo was optimistic he could line up for the Eagles in the seven-a-side contest that will take place on a rectangular field.

"I haven't really heard about anything in terms of AFLX. I'm not too sure at this stage. Hopefully I'll be fit and ready to go and put my hand up for selection," Yeo said.

"I think it'll be pretty cool to play in."

However, he knows the fickleness of his injury could stop that from happening. On Monday, Yeo took part in some drills before running at the end of the session.

"I've been told that it can be quite annoying, so it's one of those things that you have to try and do everything right," Yeo said.

A couple of midfield spots have opened up, with onballers Matt Priddis and Sam Mitchell having retired. Yeo largely lined up across half-back in 2017 but was used all round the ground and expects to continue being used as a utility.

"It's one of those ones, a little bit like last year, that I'll be playing a little bit of a different role here or there," Yeo said.

The John Worsfold medallist isn't the only Eagle coming back from injury.

Star forward Josh Kennedy (ankle), gun ruckman Nic Naitanui (knee) and key backman Eric Mackenzie (toe) are also on the comeback trail from operations, while draftee Oscar Allen is recovering from a tibia issue the club was aware of before it picked him up.

"I don't think there's been any setbacks for Nic that's been too bad, so I think he'll be right come round one," Yeo said.