NORTH Melbourne could receive a badly needed boost this week, with hard-edged midfielder Jed Anderson a possible inclusion to face his former side Hawthorn on Sunday.

Anderson (hamstring) was expected to be as many as three weeks away only six days ago, but he now needs just to pass a fitness test to return against the Hawks.

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Whether the 25-year-old, who is yet to appear in even a pre-season game this season, will immediately be in the mix for AFL selection remains to be seen.

Anderson enjoyed a breakout season in 2018, averaging 19.7 disposals (10.9 contested), 5.2 tackles and 4.6 clearances per game.

The winless Roos could do with his toughness and effectiveness in the middle, especially after conceding 43 points from centre bounces against Brisbane at the weekend.

Winger Trent Dumont (calf tightness), a late withdrawal against the Lions, and backman Sam Wright (quad), whose timeline has also been shortened, could be back, too.

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Defender Marley Williams will have to pass a fitness test as well after hurting an ankle in the 20-point defeat to Brisbane.

Oft-injured forward Taylor Garner (groin), who was held out of the VFL on the weekend, is in a similar boat as he tries to make it back to senior level, where he was last sighted in round 22, 2017.

There is no update on Ben Jacobs (sinusitis) or Will Walker (posterior cruciate ligament), while Sam Durdin (finger), Tristan Xerri (osteitis pubis) and Tom McKenzie (back) are a month away from playing.

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