LUKE Beveridge is counting the cost of the Western Bulldogs' win over Greater Western Sydney on Friday night with three players suffering injuries.
Luckless Lin Jong was forced out of his first game in almost a year, straining his right hamstring in the opening term of the 39-point victory, while Tim English was brutally concussed and may have suffered damage to his jaw in the dying stages.
But the Dogs' biggest worry could be Josh Dunkley with Beveridge expecting to be without the star midfielder "for a while" after he dislocated his shoulder twice in the final term.
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The Giants bad run with injury also continued, Nick Haynes subbed out just before quarter-time with a hamstring strain and Xavier O'Halloran hurting his shoulder.
Jong was playing just his fourth game since 2018, after a horror run with injury that most recently included an ankle issue. He has been restricted to only 65 games in 10 years at the Bulldogs.
The 27-year-old started the game brightly, picking up four disposals and having a shot at goal, before a chase down on Callan Ward left Jong clutching his right leg and needing to be subbed out just 20 minutes into the match.
"He's had some bad luck, 'Jongy', with his hamstrings,” Luke Beveridge said.
"He's had some high-grade injuries, usually when he's been tackled, had pressure on the side. It appears that something similar happened.
"It's an emotional night for him and his teammates. I think we're going to lose him for a while.”
English was concussed when Aaron Naughton came flying into a marking contest with his knee raised, which hit his 23-year-old teammate flush on the jaw.
The big Dog was motionless on the ground for several minutes before being helped up and walking slowly from the field.
"We'll lose Tim, definitely,” the Bulldogs coach said.
"He'll probably have his jaw x-rayed, so fingers crossed that he hasn’t got any bone damage.
“We'll lose him for at least a game and hopefully it's not too much more.”
Dunkley dislocated his shoulder early in the final term when attempting a spoil, but after a quick visit to the changerooms he was able to return to the field to try and add to the 29 touches he’d already gathered.
The 24-year-old instead suffered the same injury just minutes later, when he reached high to knock-on a bouncing ball but made contact with the arm of a teammate attempting the same act from the opposite direction.
The visit to the rooms was even shorter the second time round, but with the win already in the bag Dunkley watched the final minutes from the bench.
He will have scans on his shoulder in the coming days to assess the damage.
Giants coach Leon Cameron believes his side’s cursed run with injury could be due to a shorter pre-season and something that is set to spread across the competition.
"I think fatigue is setting in a fair bit now. It's unfortunate we have another hamstring injury, with Nick Haynes, and he hasn't done a hamstring before in his life,” Cameron said.
"A shorter pre-season, is it getting hold of some players across the competition? I don't know, but when Haynes does a hamstring there is a little concern.
"Is it the game being so quick for the first four or five weeks because of the adjustment of the rules, and fatigue has sort of hit in rounds six or seven? It's an interesting one.”