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Giants' Ward to miss start of AFL season

GWS co-captain Callan Ward could miss the first month of the AFL season after suffering a knee injury in a pre-season game against Sydney.

Giants' Ward to miss start of AFL season

GWS co-captain Callan Ward could miss the first month of the AFL season after suffering a knee injury in a pre-season game against Sydney.

CALLAN WARD of the Giants runs with the ball during the AFL match between the Collingwood Magpies and the Greater Western Sydney Giants at MCG in Melbourne, Australia.
CALLAN WARD of the Giants runs with the ball during the AFL match between the Collingwood Magpies and the Greater Western Sydney Giants at MCG in Melbourne, Australia. Picture:Photo by Scott Barbour/Getty Images

Durable GWS star Callan Ward will sit out his first AFL game since 2014 as he recovers from a knee injury.

The ace midfielder has been ruled out of the Giants' season opener on March 24 against Essendon and might miss up to the first four rounds.


The Giants haven't pencilled in a return date for their co-captain but are expecting him to be sidelined for up to six weeks.

Ward pulled up sore from last week's pre-season game against Sydney, with scans later revealing a strain to his lateral collateral ligament in his knee.

The injury happened in the opening minutes of the game, but the 28-year-old went on to gather 19 possessions and kick a goal.

The absence of the former Western Bulldog player will be unfamiliar for GWS as he has been a mainstay in the team since the Giants entered the AFL in 2012.

Ward has missed just five games in GWS' history and holds the club's games record with 156, 19 matches ahead of Dylan Shiel, who is playing this year for the Bombers.

The last game Ward missed was in round 23, 2014 against the Bulldogs.

"It's always disappointing to lose a player of the calibre of Callan Ward," Giants coach Leon Cameron said.

"He's been one of our most reliable and durable players over the years and has had a terrific pre-season.

"He'll approach his rehab like he does everything else - at 100 per cent - and we look forward to getting him back early in the season."

News of Ward's injury will be softened by the return of livewire forward Toby Greene for the Giants' final pre-season clash on Friday night with Adelaide.

The 25-year-old, after ankle surgery in November, will play some game time against the Crows.

"Our medical team have been really cautious and built him up to make sure he's ready for round one and they've done a terrific job," Cameron said.

AAP


AAP




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