Hickey's healing powers shock Swans coach

·2-min read

Sydney coach John Longmire was stunned and stoked to see ruckman Tom Hickey make a remarkable return as the injury-ravaged AFL side copped yet another setback.

Lewis Melican was substituted in the fourth quarter of the Swans' two-point win over Geelong because of hamstring and groin issues, with Longmire unsure how long the key defender might be out for.

Longmire is hopeful co-captain Dane Rampe could make a timely return from a broken finger against Melbourne in round eight, bolstering the Swans' undermanned defence.

"We'll back Dane in to make a good call, he always does," Longmire said.

Isaac Heeney suffered a painful knock to the ribs at the SCG on Saturday night, but Longmire is upbeat that the young gun avoided serious damage after playing out the rest of the game.

Hickey was expected to spend six to eight weeks on the Swans' injury list, which is headed by key-position players Rampe, Lance Franklin, and Sam Reid.

But the prized recruit instead missed just one game because of his torn posterior cruciate ligament (PCL), returning with a bang to be one of the Swans' best in Saturday's upset victory.

"I'm still scratching my head about it," Longmire said.

"We think he might have hurt it a bit in 2016 ... and maybe that's why he's been able to recovery so much.

"His knee must have been used to not having a full posterior cruciate, if that makes sense.

"Very rarely do you see it. I've seen Adam Goodes do it a couple of times ... Goodesy I remember didn't miss a week.

"Especially with a ruckman, it's a good effort ... that showed great character."

Longmire noted that Heeney, who last week returned from his broken hand after missing just one game, had also shown admirable composure to help the Swans break their two-game losing streak.

"Players across the competition have great guts to get out there," he said.

"Isaac gets beaten up a bit because he flies at it with such courage. He was okay after (the knock on Saturday night)."

Longmire praised his side's spirit at the SCG, where they trailed by 29 points early in the second quarter.

The Swans staged a remarkable comeback then snatched the four points when Tom Papley snapped a match-winning goal with just 91 seconds remaining.