CARLTON has put a line through Charlie Curnow for round one as it braces for an interrupted opening month for the star forward.
Curnow was sent for two separate knee surgeries following freak injuries in October and November last year and is yet to begin unassisted running post-Christmas.
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The 22-year-old first dislocated his right kneecap playing basketball with teammates – flaring the same injury that sidelined him for the final eight matches of 2019.
While recovering from his first bout of surgery, Curnow then fractured his kneecap after slipping walking upstairs at his home.
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After meeting with his surgeon in recent days, Curnow has opted to take a cautious approach through January and February.
"I had a meeting with the surgeon and the knee is tracking along quite well," Curnow told the club's website.
"We've ruled out the start of the season, which is kind of nice to know. It means I don't have to rush back.
"I can take my time to look after the knee and do all the right processes before I make my return to the field."
Curnow has been joined in the rehab group by fellow key forward Harry McKay who is being managed with ongoing groin soreness.