GREATER Western Sydney could know in the next few days if Virgin Australia AFL All Australian squad member Nick Haynes is any chance to face the Western Bulldogs in a massive elimination final on September 7.
Haynes suffered a fractured larynx against the Dogs at Giants Stadium in round 22 after a late hit from Marcus Bontempelli and missed last week's win over Gold Coast.
The star defender was expected to miss at least two weeks with the injury, but there was also a chance he could miss a month of footy.
Nick Haynes is set to miss multiple weeks with a fractured larynx after this clash with Marcus Bontempelli.— AFL.com.au (@AFLcomau) August 20, 2019
The Bont was offered a $2000 fine by the MRO yesterday. Details: https://t.co/0cRoMGwAAp pic.twitter.com/4TAqBKaVXG
Coach Leon Cameron said Haynes did some training on Sunday and was expected to do the same on Tuesday, but medical staff will determine his availability later in the week.
"Haynes will be the unknown, he'll see a specialist to see how he's progressing, so he'll be touch and go," he said.
"The specialist will tell us whether or not he's right.
"He's done some training but probably won't do any contact.
"It'll all come down to whether or not he's breathing OK, how strenuous that exercise is.
"He's got to get over that hurdle and then the second hurdle will be the contact stuff.
"It's a hard one to judge, I'm not going to know (if he's available) until the end of the week or early next week."
The Giants expressed some disappointment when the Match Review Officer only handed Bontempelli a fine for his collision with Haynes, after the club's injury report was held up.
However, Cameron said the fact that the Bulldogs' No.1 man will be there, while Haynes might be forced to watch from the stands, isn't something the Giants are worried about.
"That's done and dusted," he said.
"I know there was a fair bit of speculation about it (at the time), but we moved on straight away.
"The main concern was Nick's health.
"People are going to take hits in footy and the MRO had a look at it and deemed it not necessary to put the player out.
"Once that's done, what happens in footy clubs is you move on within about 30 seconds because you've got your players in that situation as well as being on the receiving end."
Cameron said star forward Toby Greene (calf) and important midfielder Jacob Hopper (hamstring) will be ready to go against the Bulldogs and retiring veteran Brett Deledio (calf) could also be in the frame to return.
Vice-captain Stephen Coniglio (knee) continues to make strong progress from his injury and returned to Sydney from an appointment with his surgeon in Melbourne on Monday.
The gun onballer would be a huge inclusion for the elimination final and could increase his training to include some agility work if he's given the all clear, but looks more likely to be ready the following week, if the Giants win through.