Sunday, July 14, 2024

Mixed results for Hawks after fitness tests

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AFL Rd 14 -  Richmond v Hawthorn

Hawthorn captain James Sicily is set to return against Fremantle in Launceston on Saturday. Picture: Graham Denholm / Getty Images

James Sicily is poised to return to lead Hawthorn in its crucial clash against Fremantle on Saturday, but small forward Jack Ginnivan is unlikely to join him.

Hawks coach Sam Mitchell said Sicily was “more likely than unlikely” to play after getting through training at Waverley Park on Thursday following his second shoulder injury this season.

Ginnivan, who suffered a “small crack” to his fibula in the same clash against West Coast, was poised to miss the trip to Launceston, where the Hawks must win to preserve a realistic chance of playing finals.

“Ginni’s more unlikely than likely but not ruled out. (Sicily) and Calsher (Dear) are more likely than unlikely but not ticked off yet,” Mitchell said.

AFL Rd 16 - West Coast v HawthornAFL Rd 16 - West Coast v Hawthorn

Hawthorn is unlikely to roll the dice on Jack Ginnivan. Picture: Will Russell / Getty Images

“I’ll trust the physios and the doctors – if they say he (Sicily) is available, then he’ll play. If they say he’s not, then he won’t.

“A lot of his (testing) is around confidence and static strength. They do these boring little tests that look like nothing … it gives you a measure of the stability of the shoulder.”

Dear’s return would bolster Hawthorn’s forward line following Mitch Lewis’ season-ending knee injury, but Mitchell said Max Ramsden and mid-season draft pick Jasper Scaife would both come into selection calculations as well.

The coach was rapt with Lewis’ attitude and presence around the club following his devastating ACL blow, which came in his first game since round 3 after suffering a hamstring strain followed by persistent knee inflammation.


Hawthorn coach Sam Mitchell (left) says the Hawks are ‘proud’ of Mitch Lewis’ response to a season-ending knee injury after already missing three months of football. Picture: Jason Edwards

“He’s got a brace on his knee but he’s still at the club … he’s still going to the line meetings and having his input into how we need to play and what we need to do to beat Freo,” Mitchell said.

“I think it’s important for him that everyone sees that – he’s still a great person to have around the club.

“There will be some down times and he’ll have the surgery over the next couple of weeks, so there’s some challenges ahead but at the moment, onward and upward.”

Mitchell said he hoped Hawthorn’s midfield, who were comprehensively beaten by Geelong last week, would be “closer to their best” against the Dockers’ star-studded on-ball brigade.

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