PORT Adelaide key forward Charlie Dixon will end an almost 10-month absence from competitive football when he returns from a broken leg and a damaged ankle to play in the SANFL on Saturday.
It will be the 28-year-old's first game since landing awkwardly in a marking contest in the Power's round 21 loss to West Coast at Adelaide Oval on August 11 last year.
Dixon won't be the only big name running out for the Port Adelaide Magpies against Sturt at Alberton Oval this weekend.
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Co-captain Ollie Wines was also given the all-clear to resume through the reserves, after passing a fitness test on Thursday morning in his first hit-out since scans revealed a small fracture in his leg after the Power's round seven loss to Collingwood.
With Port having the bye this weekend, Dixon and Wines, along with vice-captain Hamish Hartlett and veteran midfielders Brad Ebert (concussion) and Tom Rockliff (hamstring), could all be big inclusions for the Power’s round 13 clash with Fremantle at Optus Stadium.
Ebert and Rockliff are both unlikely to play in the SANFL this weekend, but will be in the mix to face the Dockers.
Dixon is arguably Port Adelaide’s most important player and provides them with a valuable target inside the forward 50.
He had a slight setback in his recovery in March when he had a clean-out of his right ankle, but has increased his training loads in the past month to allay any external fears he might miss the entire season.