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Demons mid out for 12 weeks – but it could have been worse

Kennedy-Harris stretchered off Jay Kennedy-Harris lands awkwardly on leg

MELBOURNE midfielder Jay Kennedy Harris is set to miss up to 12 weeks after suffering a severe hyperextension of his knee in Saturday's JLT Community Series game against Brisbane.

Kennedy Harris left the field on a stretcher in the second quarter of the game, with initial fears around the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee.

But after further assessment the outcome was much better than expected, according to Demons' elite performance manager Dave Misson.

"Luckily, his ACL was okay, but he's got pretty significant bone bruising on that knee," Mission told melbournefc.com.au.

"He's probably 12 weeks before he's back to play."

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In better news, midfielder James Harmes, who sustained a compound dislocation of his little finger, and Braydon Preuss, who injured his groin in the VFL curtain raiser, should be available to play in round one.

Harmes had surgery on Saturday night after getting his finger caught in the jumper of Lions player Lachie Neale.

"We expect him to be running at the end of the week, back doing ball work and full training next week, and be able to play in round one," Misson said of Harmes.

 

Forward Joel Smith has "pulled up sore" in the groin after landing awkwardly in a marking contest early in the game and will now face a fitness test ahead of round one.

"Joel had a pretty significant groin injury in the game – he just landed in a marking contest and pulled up really sore. Because we were two down on the bench, unfortunately we had to keep Joel going," Misson said. 

"We played him deep forward which probably didn't help his groin. He's pulled up pretty sore, so we'll have to assess him towards the end of the week about what his reloading plan is."

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Star trio Nathan Jones (hamstring), Jack Viney (ankle) and Jake Melksham (hamstring) are all on track for round one after playing in Saturday's VFL practice match, while Bayley Fritsch (corked hip) will also be available. 

Jones copped a corked calf in his return to action in the VFL, while Viney was sore after a corkie in the iliotibial band of his leg. Neither niggle will prevent either co-captain from being ready for the opening round.