DUAL Hawthorn premiership ruckman Ben McEvoy is poised to reclaim the No.1 ruck mantle against Max Gawn on Sunday with Jon Ceglar ruled out through injury.
AFL.com.au understands Ceglar – who has led the ruck for the Hawks this season – broke his toe early in last week's loss to Collingwood and will miss at least one week.
It is expected to see McEvoy return to the centre of the ground to tackle Gawn who has had strong success against the Hawks, earning one Brownlow Medal vote last year and a career-high 66 hitouts in 2018.
McEvoy has played six games this season predominantly as a key defender but was thrown into the ruck after half-time last week and after quarter-time in round five.
"I've obviously got the runs on the board as a ruckman and know I can play good footy there but I'm honestly not too fussed, it's whatever will work best for the team," McEvoy said on Monday.
"Probably it'd be good to be in one position because that means the team's going well and we're pretty stable, not having to changes things and not having injuries."
Should McEvoy be released from his key defensive post, it could open the door for Michael Hartley to play his first game for the Hawks.
The former Essendon defender, who crossed ahead of this season on a two-year deal, was an emergency for the Hawks last week.
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Melbourne has injury concerns of its own, with key forward Tom McDonald ruled out with an eye injury.
Should the Hawks look to replace Ceglar with another ruckman, 30-year-old journeyman Keegan Brooksby could prove a viable option.
The former Gold Coast big man, who was picked up via South Adelaide in the pre-season supplemental selection period, last played AFL in round 23, 2017.
The Hawks are also hoping to regain key forward Mitch Lewis from a hip injury to replace hamstrung spearhead Jon Patton.