WEST Coast simply cannot catch a break in 2022 with star ruckman Nic Naitanui ruled out until the second half of the season with a knee injury.
The three-time All-Australian damaged a medial ligament after landing at a centre bounce late in Saturday's remarkable 13-point win over Collingwood at Marvel Stadium.
The club confirmed he underwent scans on Sunday and will hope to return to play in the second half of the season. Naitanui will initially spend several weeks with his knee in a brace.
"Nic was sore post game and scans have revealed what our medical staff suspected after the game," West Coast football manager Gavin Bell said.
"We'll take a really conservative approach with Nic. Work our way through his rehab but we're expecting to see him in the second half of the season."
Naitanui missed out on West Coast's 2018 premiership due to an ACL injury, having missed all of the 2017 season following a knee reconstruction.
The loss of Naitanui is the latest setback for the Eagles, who have been ravaged by injuries and players entering health and safety protocols this season.
West Coast have used 37 players across four rounds, including five top-up players, with only four players used in all four games; Shannon Hurn, Jeremy McGovern, Patrick Naish and Luke Foley.
Eagles coach Adam Simpson had indicated the side would be boosted by the returns of Luke Shuey, Elliot Yeo and Tim Kelly for their upcoming Good Friday game with Sydney.
Bailey Williams is Naitanui's likely replacement having been left out for Saturday's win over Collingwood following a week in protocols, with impressive SSP signing Hugh Dixon preferred as the back-up ruck.