Gary Ablett talks to Matt Rowell after the Cats' big win. Picture: AFL Photos

GOLD Coast wunderkind Matt Rowell will have shoulder surgery next week and is set to be sidelined for at least three months.

The 19-year-old midfielder, who has already been voted best afield in the AFL Coaches' Association's player of the year award in three games this season, landed on his right arm after a heavy tackle from Brandan Parfitt during the round five match against Geelong on Saturday night.


That tackle was in the first quarter and Rowell sat out the rest of the game with his arm in a sling.


Gold Coast football operations boss Jon Haines said the the decision to undergo surgery was made in consultation with specialists, along with Rowell and his family.

"Matt met with a surgeon again today in Sydney and the outcome from that is he’ll undertake some surgery early next week," Haines said. 

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"This is the first real injury that Matt’s had in his whole career so it was a new experience for him. 

"Ultimately it was a decision that Matt had to make so we had to make sure that we laid all the evidence and all the research and all the information out for him and his family to consider and for them to make an informed opinion ..."

Rowell, last year's No.1 NAB AFL Draft pick, has captivated the AFL this season with his ridiculously hot form.

And Geelong champion Gary Ablett - who endured serious shoulder injuries in the latter stages of his career at Gold Coast before returning to the Cats - spoke to the five-game sensation after Geelong's 37-point win.


"Obviously I've had a couple of shoulder reconstructions myself so I just asked him how his shoulder was," said Ablett, who was celebrating his 350th game on the night. 

"He doesn't know at the moment and is going to have to get a scan so [I'm] hoping it's not too bad. 

"But I said to him once he gets the results, if he wants to give me a call and talk through things, I can let him know what worked for me and what didn't."