CARLTON duo Zac Fisher and Nic Newman could face further delays in their return to football, with both suffering significant injuries during the club's season-opener against Richmond.

RUCK BLOW Big Blue's bad break to keep him out for months

Fisher sustained a syndesmosis injury during the defeat to the Tigers, while Newman has been sent for surgery after dislocating his elbow, with both expected to be in recovery for much of the next two months.

07:10 Mins
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Highlights: Richmond v Carlton

The Tigers and Blues clash in round one

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With competition suspended until at least May 31 due to the ongoing global outbreak of the COVID-19 virus, the Blues pair could be staring at the possibility of missing more football upon the game's return to action.

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Fisher has avoided surgery on his ankle problem, but will be in a moon boot for the majority of the next four weeks. However, this outcome could see the zippy midfielder back in time for the month-long 'mini pre-season' that is due to take place before football returns.

"He had a Richmond player fall on his ankle during the game," Carlton's high-performance boss Andrew Russell told the club's website.

Nic Newman is helped by a trainer after injuring his elbow in R1, 2020. Picture: AFL Photos

"At the time, we thought it was a low-grade injury. But when it cooled down the next day, it had an inflammatory process. He was very sore the next day.

"We did a scan and it showed he had a syndesmosis ankle injury. These can be quite challenging to manage, but we've decided to go conservative and not do surgery on this.

"He should be very close to resuming when we get going. He might play or he might be the first few weeks after we resume."

He dislocated his elbow and amazingly came back on and had pretty good function

- Andrew Russell

Newman could miss more than two months as a result of his elbow injury, with the club now uncertain as to whether he will be available should football return in the first week of June.

"He dislocated his elbow and amazingly came back on and had pretty good function," Russell said.

WHO'S SORE? Check out the full AFL injury list

"We had a decision to make as to whether we did surgery or not. Given the break, we decided to get surgery on that lateral ligament on his elbow.

"We feel like it's going to be an 8-10 week injury. He should be back, maybe when we resume or pretty soon after we resume."

Carlton has a number of players in rehab heading into the indefinite suspension of play, with Matthew Kreuzer (foot), Charlie Curnow (knee), Harry McKay (groin), Brodie Kemp (knee), Eddie Betts (calf) and Caleb Marchbank (knee) all currently on the injury list.

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Blue blow as big man goes down

Carlton ruckman Matthew Kreuzer in the hands of trainers after this clash in the ruck duel

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