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Heart issue likely to force Pie into retirement

Kayle Kirby runs out for his only AFL game in round 23 last year - AFL,Collingwood Magpies,Kayle Kirby
Kayle Kirby runs out for his only AFL game in round 23 last year

COLLINGWOOD forward Kayle Kirby is likely to be forced into retirement due to his heart condition, according to the Pie's manager Scott Lucas.

Kirby, 20 on Friday, collapsed on-field in a VFL practice match against North Melbourne in March at the Holden Centre, and he hasn't played since.

Speaking on Macquarie Sports Radio on Wednesday morning, Lucas said concerns over Kirby's heart are expected to see him retire.

The goalsneak is among a host of unsigned Magpies, including Jarryd Blair, Josh Daicos, Tyson Goldsack, Levi Greenwood, Jack Madgen, Sam McLarty, Brody Mihocek, Adam Oxley and Josh Smith.

"He's going really well (health wise), but from a football point of view, it's still a discussion taking place with the relevant heart specialists and the club," Lucas said.

"(Continuing to play) football may be a challenge, but quality of life, so forth, he has full clearance there.

"I wouldn't say he'll be delisted, I would think the (medical) advice would be he's no longer able to play at the highest level because of his condition."

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Kirby made his debut in the final round of 2017, picking up four disposals in the 16-point win against Melbourne.

The Bendigo Pioneers product was drafted at No.50 in 2016 and his original two-year contract expires next Wednesday.

Kirby was not the only player afflicted by a heart concern this year, with St Kilda defender Dylan Roberton missing most of the season after collapsing on-field in the round four clash against Geelong.

Lucas also gave an update on another uncontracted player from his stable, with Western Bulldogs ruckman Tom Campbell still in the dark on whether he'll continue on at Whitten Oval.

The 26-year-old has only played 42 games in seven seasons at the Dogs and didn't manage a senior game in 2018.

"(Tom doesn't have a contract) at this stage, but we're just working through that with the Bulldogs," Lucas said.

Tom Liberatore, who is expected to be re-signed by the Bulldogs, and Mitch Honeychurch are the other two players at the club without deals for next season.