RUGGED Brisbane Lions defender Darcy Gardiner requires reconstructive shoulder and ankle surgery and will miss the remainder of the season.
The banged-up second-year player dislocated his shoulder against the Sydney Swans on Sunday and was subbed out of the match early.
Gardiner had carried shoulder and ankle problems for much of the season and was hopeful of seeing out the year.
The knock to the shoulder put an end to that and he will now undergo multiple rounds of surgery, starting next week.
The ankle will be done first so he can use his arms with the crutches he will need for a month or so, and then the shoulder will be rebuilt.
Football manager Dean Warren said Gardiner’s loss was a blow.
"He is a lovely kid, quiet around the club but once he crosses the line he is fiercely competitive, that’s what we love about him," Warren said.
"He does big jobs for us, he gives away a bit in size and obviously experience, but for a young kid most of the time is very hard to play on. He prides himself on that."