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Weitering ready to go, Gorringe for Blue debut

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MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - MAY 1: Jacob Weitering of the Blues leaves the field injured during the 2016 AFL Round 06 match between the Carlton Blues and the Essendon Bombers at the Melbourne Cricket Ground, Melbourne on May 1, 2016. (Photo by Adam Trafford/AFL Media)
Jacob Weitering has recovered from a shoulder injury sustained against Essendon
We can't just rely on Jacob Weitering
Carlton coach Brendon Bolton

JACOB Weitering is "ready to perform" against North Melbourne on Saturday night after missing two weeks with a shoulder injury, Carlton coach Brendon Bolton says.

Last year's No.1 draft pick injured his shoulder in the Blues' round six clash against Essendon at the MCG and despite initial fears, he avoided surgery.

Bolton dismissed any doubts surrounding the 18-year-old's fitness ahead of the clash against the Roos at Etihad Stadium.

Match preview: North Melbourne v Carlton

"Jacob's back because he's ready. He's been an absolute professional. His rehab has gone really well so he's ready to perform," Bolton said.

"It's another great challenge for him. We can't just rely on Jacob Weitering, it's about our pressure around the ball."

The Blues have suffered twin injury blows ahead of the duel against the Roos, with ruckman Matthew Kreuzer and key forward Levi Casboult both sidelined through injury.

Kreuzer had surgery to repair the meniscus in his knee and is set to miss up to a month. Casboult fractured his tibia and could be out for up to two months.

Accordingly, Bolton has been forced to call upon former Gold Coast ruckman Daniel Gorringe to take on the competition's pre-eminent ruckman, Todd Goldstein.

With Andrew Phillips (hamstring) also not ready to return there will be a big reliance on the 200cm big man, who played 22 games in five seasons for the Suns before being signed as a delisted free agent in the off-season.

Goldstein is ranked second in the AFL for hit-outs per game (36.3 per game) and has an elite aerobic capacity.

It was one of the reasons why Bolton preferred Gorringe over journeyman Cameron Wood, who was also upgraded to the primary list during the week.

"[Daniel's] an elite runner. He's got a great endurance base and good speed so footy's about opportunity and here's a good chance against a really quality ruckman," Bolton said.

"He's got a terrific engine so that gives him the opportunity. Wood's a terrific competitor but we've gone with a guy who can really run this week."

Remarkably, the Blues will be chasing their fifth win on the trot against the Kangaroos.

Bolton said the place was "buzzing" with enthusiasm after an encouraging month of football.

"Our team's been buzzing in terms of work rate and effort and nothing's changed," Bolton said.

"We need to make sure we keep being defined by work rate and effort. The wins are the little steps of affirmation.

"With all the work we need to do we can't afford to get high and low."