GEELONG'S Nathan Vardy had surgery on his reconstructed knee on Monday night, creating further uncertainty about when he might return.
Cats' coach Chris Scott said he remained hopeful Vardy would play in the second half of the season as he expected the ruckman to resume full training relatively quickly, but wasn't able to guarantee when the return might occur.
"It's so uncertain that I don't want to appear definitive but our expectation is that this is a minor setback," Scott said.
"The feedback is that the surgery went really well. It was only a minor procedure just to clean out a bit of an impingement so we're hopeful that will only keep him out for a couple of weeks."
Vardy missed 2014 after having his knee reconstructed when he damaged the ACL at training during the pre-season.
The 23-year-old’s most recent game was in the 2013 preliminary final and he has played just 21 games in an injury-interrupted career.
Vardy is one of several Cats battling long-term injuries with Daniel Menzel on his way back after four knee reconstructions, Lincoln McCarthy struggling with a foot injury and Josh Cowan suffering several soft-tissue injuries.
Scott said that did put pressure on the depth of the Cats’ list.
"It affects us because we think if they were fully fit they would be in our best 22," Scott said.
The coach also acknowledged Joel Selwood did get frustrated with the attention paid to him by Ed Curnow on Friday night, but said it was not a major issue for either the skipper or the club.
Scott said Selwood puts up with such attention every week and described the captain’s general reaction over the course of his career as “pretty impressive”.
Scott said the umpires were good at monitoring such niggle and clear in their communication to the club about how they officiated such situations.
"They're going to watch it a little closer and Joel would welcome that," Scott said.
He said the clash with West Coast on Sunday was a good opportunity for both clubs to get a clearer indication about how they were travelling.