YOUNG Kangaroos defender Sam Durdin won't play again this season after fracturing his right tibia in the VFL on Saturday.
Durdin, 22, has played only nine AFL games, including one this year, since North Melbourne selected him with the No.16 pick in the 2014 NAB AFL Draft, but is viewed as a long-term option.
The 198cm backman suffered the injury in the third quarter of the Roos' 85-point loss to Richmond in their state league match at Beaconsfield.
"The stretcher was called straight away, so we knew it was a significant injury," North football boss Cameron Joyce said.
"It's disappointing for Sam, because he was putting together a very solid season down back.
"He and Ben McKay have been patiently waiting for a spot to open up in the AFL and were only being held out by the strong form of Robbie Tarrant, Scott Thompson and Majak Daw."
Durdin, originally from South Australia, is contracted at Arden St until the end of the 2019 season and can also play forward, but has predominantly been a defender at the Kangaroos.
"Durds has shown that, along with Ben, he is very much a key pillar for our club going forward in the backline," Joyce said.
"After he recovers, I have no doubt he'll return an even more capable and reliable defender in 2019 and beyond."