GOLD Coast midfielder Dion Prestia has played his last game for 2016 – and possibly his last in Suns colours.
Prestia is having surgery in Melbourne on Tuesday afternoon, with his knee injury worse than first thought
The out-of-contract 23-year-old has been playing with pain for much of the season, but aggravated the problem in round 16 against the Brisbane Lions.
The recovery period is six weeks, ruling Prestia out of a return to action this year.
Captain Gary Ablett has received a second opinion on options for his shoulder surgery and will decide the best course of action later in the week, while Michael Rischitelli will have surgery on his ruptured ACL on Friday.
Prestia will have his bout of knee surgery and then decide on his future.
"He'll miss the rest of the year," Gold Coast football manager Marcus Ashcroft told AFL.com.au.
"We thought it'd be touch and go, but with five weeks remaining, there's not enough time to come back.
"He's pushed through most of the year with what he's had."
Prestia has "wear and tear" and some floating bone in the knee that needs cleaning out.
Fellow midfielder Jaeger O'Meara will have to wait at least another fortnight for a senior recall, with some untimely scheduling halting his comeback from a long-term knee injury.
O'Meara was due to play a full NEAFL match at the weekend, but was taken off at half-time with general tightness.
Gold Coast has a bye in the NEAFL this weekend, meaning the 22-year-old will have to wait another week to play a full reserves game to prove his fitness.
Ashcroft said O'Meara had pulled up well, but with the club's "no risk policy" was never in contention to play Fremantle this weekend.
"Now he's back playing competitive footy, he's going to get sore in other areas, like his calves and his hamstrings," he said.
"We're not going to take a chance with him."
Rischitelli, 30, is already in Melbourne ahead of his surgery on Friday and said he was aiming for an earlier return than the once-standard 12 months for a traditional knee reconstruction.
"If I can get back before round 10 or even round 6-7-8 I'd be pretty happy," Rischitelli said on Fox Footy on Tuesday night.
"But I think with these things you've got to take your time and get it right, so I'll be doing that to the best of my ability.
"I really felt for guys who have done an ACL and know it's my turn.
"The rehab these days is pretty good so I'm pretty confident I'll be back bigger and stronger."
- with Nathan Schmook