CHFL: Concern over Hepburn key defender's fitness

Out: Hepburn defender Daniel Smith (left) has injured a shoulder in an overseas mountain biking accident. Picture: JULIE HOUGH

Out: Hepburn defender Daniel Smith (left) has injured a shoulder in an overseas mountain biking accident. Picture: JULIE HOUGH

AN OVERSEAS mountain biking accident has cast doubt over Hepburn defender Daniel Smith’s fitness for the remainder of the Central Highlands Football League season.

Burras senior coach Clive Raak was unclear on how long Smith, who is still on holidays, would remain on the sidelines.

“He has to get scans and see what grade (the injury) is. If it is grade three, he’s in a lot of trouble, grade two it’s probably a bit ‘iffy’, grade one then it’s not too serious and if it’s no grade, it’s good,” Raak said.

“It will be really disappointing if he misses a couple of weeks.

“Hopefully it’s not as bad as it seems, but we won’t know until one or two more days,” Raak said on Thursday.

Regardless of the injury, Smith was set to miss his second game of the year this Saturday against Creswick, which is part of a big day of celebrations for the Burras, which will hold their 2004 premiership reunion.

The senior side is ticking along sweetly after registering a 10th-straight victory over Smythesdale last Saturday.

Raak and his selection panel rested some sore bodies including Nev Purtell, Joe Malone and Beau Ryan, which could all potentially slot back into the side this weekend, as could gun onballer Josh Clissold for his first senior game of the year following shoulder surgery.

Meanwhile, Creswick has made a handful of alterations to the team that beat Dunnstown, with young Dylan Murray up for his first senior game of 2014, while Brad Dunbar and Peter Griffin are part of an extended interchange. Key defender Gary Knights and onballer Alex Stepnell are the outs.

PREDICTION: Hepburn by 45 points.

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