HAWTHORN is considering a range of left-field ruck options if Ned Reeves can't prove his fitness in time to face Gold Coast in Darwin this Saturday night.

With Max Lynch entering the AFL's concussion protocols after a head knock against Brisbane on Sunday and Ben McEvoy still sidelined with the neck injury that has limited him to one appearance in 2022, the Hawks are facing the daunting task of combating Suns co-captain Jarrod Witts without a recognised ruckman.

Reeves trained with the main group at Waverley Park on Wednesday morning and hasn’t been ruled out for the trip to the Northern Territory just yet, but the 23-year-old hasn’t played since dislocating his shoulder against Geelong on Easter Monday and might still require a shoulder reconstruction at some stage.

Hawthorn coach Sam Mitchell said the Hawks will consider using key forward Jacob Koschitzke and Irish utility Conor Nash in the ruck – just like they did when Reeves went down in round five – as well as midfielder Daniel Howe or even key defender Sam Frost.

Conor Nash gets a handball away during round six, 2022. Picture: AFL Photos

"He is some chance, so we'll give him another day and do a fitness test with him tomorrow and see how that goes. Have you got any ideas? It's going to be an interesting one in the ruck if he's unavailable," Mitchell told reporters at Waverley Park on Wednesday.

"I'm actually quite excited by that prospect, we'll have to do something different. It will make us quite hard to scout. They won't know who we're rucking and what type of player or whether we just try and get them for run around the ground. We've got some creative ideas in the back of our minds if Ned doesn’t come up.

"As a whole match committee, we sit in our room up there and throw the magnets around and discuss what we want to do. We've already tried Conor Nash in the ruck. Someone like Daniel Howe could play in there. Frosty told me this morning that he has played as a second ruck for a couple of games at Melbourne. That's one we hadn’t thought of. There are a couple of ideas. Jacob Koschitzke has played in there at different stages.

"You're not probably going to win. Witts is a really big, strong ruckman, so we're probably not going to win the hit-out but can we still win that part of the game without winning the hit-outs."

Jarrod Witts contests the ruck against Jack Silvagni for the Gold Coast Suns against Carlton in round four, 2022. Picture: AFL Photos

Lynch has endured a nightmare run since crossing from Collingwood during last October's trade period, after struggling for opportunities behind dual All-Australian Brodie Grundy.

The 23-year-old suffered a concussion against North Melbourne in round one before entering health and safety protocols before he had exited concussion protocols. Then he experienced an anaphylactic reaction to a bee sting ahead of Easter Monday, before a bout of food poisoning last week ahead of the trip to Launceston.

MEDICAL ROOM Check out the full injury list

"He is in a pretty good headspace. He is not feeling great I don’t think, still going through his concussion protocols. He's had a really rough run. I keep talking to him about looking at the big picture. He had a concussion earlier in the year and in his mind it was this huge deal," Mitchell said.

"He is going to get back from this and he's going to be a really important player for us later on this season. We look forward to getting him back for the long term because he has had enough bad luck to last him a couple of years."

Hawthorn ruckman Max Lynch heads to the bench against Brisbane in R10, 2022. Picture: Getty Images

Young gun Will Day remains a chance to face the Suns at TIO Stadium despite being substituted out of Sunday's win with an ankle injury, after sliding into the fence trying to save a goal.

Mitchell said the South Australian was cleared of more serious damage after undergoing two operations on the same ankle last year, but will need to prove his fitness this week.

"He just has some bruising in his ankle. As long as it functions OK there is no risk of injury and he just has a sore ankle, if he gets through training today and we'll give him another fitness test tomorrow just to make sure," he said.

"A little bit of it is how he performs and how he recovers from it. With a four or five-hour flight it might swell up on the plane, so they are things we need to consider. We are quite hopeful that he will be available."

PLAY AFL FANTASY Make your trades NOW

Hawthorn will head to the Northern Territory on Friday ahead of the game on Saturday night, with some players and staff spending a day or two in Darwin and in Katherine after the game to complete some community activities.

Mitchell got the job done against a member of Hawthorn's formidable football program during the dynasty – Brisbane coach Chris Fagan – on Sunday and will now meet 2008 premiership teammate Stuart Dew this weekend.