HAWTHORN is yet to decide on whether Blake Hardwick will return for Friday night's clash against Geelong, with the club confirming that star midfielder Jaeger O'Meara will miss due to a fracture above his eye.
As reported by AFL.com.au earlier this week, O'Meara is yet to complete a full-contact session since hurting his head in late May and sat out the club's main training session on Wednesday.
He will subsequently be unavailable to face Geelong at GMHBA Stadium this weekend, with Hawthorn still hopeful he can return for next week's bout against the reigning premiers Richmond amid a tough four-week fixture block for the club.
"He won't play this week," coach Alastair Clarkson said on Thursday.
"We met with the doctors yesterday. He's done most of the training, but we haven't been able to ramp it up to full-on contact just yet. The surgeon and the doctor won't allow us to do that until early next week.
"He's an unfortunate miss for us this week, but he'll hopefully be all right for next week."
Hawthorn is also yet to decide on Hardwick's place in the team, despite the important defender returning to full fitness following a pectoral injury during the coronavirus suspension period.
Hardwick has completed his three-month recovery process after rupturing his pectoral muscle in early March, but faces stiff competition to return to the side after its impressive round one victory over premiership contenders Brisbane.
THE 22 FOR ROUND TWO Our reporters predict your line-ups
"He's available to play … we just need to make a tough call on whether he's done enough," Clarkson said.
"He's been doing contact stuff for probably three or four weeks now, so we're reasonably pleased with where he's positioned. We'll determine that today, whether he makes our 22.
"We had a good victory against Brisbane early in the season. It's been a fair old wait for round two to come, but we don't necessarily want to make too much change to the side that knocked off Brisbane."