ESSENDON received some good news on the injury front regarding enigmatic forward Jake Stringer, but the Bombers are still likely to require reinforcements for Thursday night's blockbuster clash against West Coast in Perth.
Things didn't look good for Stringer when he limped from the ground with a leg injury during the third quarter of the Bombers' impressive 19-point victory over Hawthorn on Friday night, but scans have since cleared the 25-year-old of any serious damage.
While the Bombers are yet to put a timeline on Stringer's return, it looks likely that the former Western Bulldogs premiership player will miss the trip across the Nullarbor to take on the reigning premiers.
"We're pleased the scans have revealed no fractures to the bone or damage to the ankle area," Essendon general manager of football Dan Richardson said.
"At the moment it is difficult to put a timeframe on his playing availability, so while it is unlikely he will play, we will closely monitor Jake throughout the week before we make an informed decision on our team selection for Thursday's clash."
The Bombers' task will be even tougher with news that the Eagles are set to welcome back a pair of premiership stars and a young key forward to their already imposing side.
Shannon Hurn (hamstring) and Elliot Yeo (calf) look likely to be fit for the Dons clash after they missed out on the disappointing 45-point loss to the Swans in round 12.
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Big man Oscar Allen (ankle) is also a chance to return, while fellow tall Nic Naitanui is expected to be eased back into the fray and resume in the WAFL against East Fremantle on Saturday.
There could be some changes on the way for both the Swans and the Hawks when they meet at the SCG on Friday night, with both sides a chance to be missing some key personnel.
The Swans may need to find someone to replace veteran Jarrad McVeigh (thigh), while the Hawks will be sweating on the outcome of skipper Ben Stratton's trip to the Tribunal.
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Stratton has been cited for serious misconduct against Essendon speedster Orazio Fantasia during the first quarter of the Hawks' loss to the Bombers and for a final-term stomping incident on big man Shaun McKernan.
The experienced defender has already shown some remorse for the McKernan altercation and has admitted he needs to set a better example as captain of the Hawks.
"My actions probably weren't a great look for the game and it's probably not something you want to be known for," Stratton told Hawthorn's club website.
"As captain I've got to be better and setting the example for not only the Hawthorn club but also any kids out there."
North Melbourne spearhead Ben Brown was reported for an incident involving Matt Buntine during the third quarter of the Kangaroos' 23-point loss to the Giants on Sunday.
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The Bulldogs will need to find a replacement for Tom Liberatore for Sunday's clash against Collingwood at Marvel Stadium, after the influential midfielder hurt his knee against Carlton at the weekend.
While scans on Sunday morning have confirmed that Liberatore has escaped another ACL injury, the 27-year-old still requires arthroscopic surgery and will not be available to take on the in-form Magpies.
In-form Giants tagger Matt de Boer hurt his shoulder during a third-quarter incident in his team's 23-point triumph over North Melbourne.
The Giants have the bye next round, so de Boer will have plenty of time to prove his fitness ahead of their next contest against the Bombers on June 27.
In other injury news:
- Crows veteran Josh Jenkins hurt his knee against the Tigers on Thursday night and he is likely to be sidelined for at least a month. The news on Lachlan Murphy (teeth caved in), Daniel Talia (quad) and Jake Kelly (calf) was better though, with the trio expected to be available following the Crows' round 14 bye.
- Big ruckman Ivan Soldo (virus) was a late withdrawal from the Richmond side that lost to the Crows and he will need to be monitored ahead of the Tigers next match in a fortnight's time.
- Carlton duo Ed Curnow (leg) and Jacob Weitering (calf) both picked up knocks against the Bulldogs on Saturday night and have a week off to recover ahead of the round 15 match against the Dockers.
- Highly rated St Kilda youngster Max King hurt his knee when playing in the VFL on Sunday although initial scans have come back positive for the tall forward.
- Sydney defender Nick Smith has been ruled out for the rest of the season due to a persistent hamstring injury. The backman first suffered the injury in round 21 last year and has not played at all in 2019.