Essendon’s Josh Begley and Port Adelaide veteran Hamish Hartlett are expected to miss the rest of the 2018 AFL season after suffering knee injuries this week.
The 19-year-old Begley went down in the first quarter of the Bombers’ loss to Collingwood on Anzac Day and had his knee strapped soon after.
While there had been hope he had avoided serious damage, the news was confirmed on Thursday afternoon.
“He has great support around him, he is a terrific young man and we are confident he will make a full recovery following a successful rehabilitation program,” Essendon footy boss Dan Richardson said.
Begley, who made his AFL debut in round 22 last year and had held his spot through to Wednesday’s game, will undergo surgery next week.
PORT ADELAIDE’S VETERAN BLOW
Hartlett is facing a long break on the sidelines after suffering a knee injury at training on Thursday.
Port general manager of football Chris Davies said the 27-year-old suffered suspected damage to the anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee during a routine drill.
“This is obviously a terrible blow for Hamish and the football club,” Davies said in a statement.
“Hamish had started the season well and we saw last weekend what a courageous and skilful player he is.
“It was an innocuous incident that caused the injury. He went to change direction and his leg gave way beneath him.
“We fear Hamish won’t be back on the field for some time but no doubt he’ll continue to contribute as a leader of our football club.”
The 27-year-old Hartlett has played all five matches to date this year for a career tally of 153.
Scans will confirm the severity of the injury.