AN ESSENDON father-son prospect drawing significant AFL interest suffered a gruesome compound fracture and dislocated elbow on his left arm on Saturday.
Matt Neagle, whose late father Merv and brother Jay played for the Bombers, launched into a marking contest to spoil an opponent and it was obvious on landing he had suffered a serious injury.
The 20-year-old writhed in agony on the ground as trainers and two of his brothers and teammates, Jydon and Jaxon, rushed to his aid ahead of an ambulance arriving.
Neagle underwent two operations at Melbourne's Epworth Hospital on Monday, with doctors inserting a plate into his broken arm.
He was playing for the Wodonga Raiders – the same club Collingwood's Sam Murray was drafted from – in the Ovens and Murray league under former Swan Daryn Cresswell.
The umpires subsequently called a premature end to the match, with the second-placed Raiders leading Yarrawonga by 58 points midway through the final quarter.
Neagle, who had 25 disposals at the time, will miss the rest of the season and potentially the chance to play in a premiership alongside his brothers before likely joining an AFL club in November.
WATCH Neagle struts his stuff
He is considered a late national draft or rookie selection, with Cresswell speaking to seven recruiters on Neagle's behalf.
"This might actually help him once people see how courageous he is," Cresswell told AFL.com.au.
"They asked him what his pain was like and he said, 'Is Daryn here still? If he is, it's zero and if he isn't, it's 10' – he's a ripper kid and has a bit of Merv in him and is just so resilient.
"He's just a ready-made AFL player. You could put him in and he's good enough to play right now. I would be completely staggered if no-one takes him."
Video credit: Cartwright Productions