Western derby injuries mount as Heath Chapman, Ethan Hughes, Michael Frederick, Nathan Vardy all hurt
Fremantle Dockers youngster Heath Chapman has bravely played on after suffering an ugly landing on his right shoulder in the early stages of Sunday’s western derby - but Ethan Hughes has been subbed out.
Chapman, 19, went up in a marking contest with West Coast forward Jake Waterman before appearing to crunch down with full force on his shoulder.
The contest occurred before either team had hit the scoreboard, just minutes into the crowd-less clash at Optus Stadium.
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Playing just his sixth AFL game, Chapman went down into Fremantle’s rooms to receive medical treatment, but returned to the field shortly after.
Unfortunately the youngster must continue to play with Hughes substituted out of the clash due to a shoulder injury.
Taylin Duman entered the game in the second quarter for his first senior AFL game of season 2021.
“The arm is outstretched and bang he goes down, that’s a classic outstretch of the shoulder. Hopefully it’s a stinger, watch it here,” Eddie McGuire said on commentary of Chapman’s injury.
“Oh it’s popped out. It’s popped out, that’s a dislocation, that’s more than a subluxation.”
Fremantle’s shoulder troubles were compounded when Hughes was crunched in a heavy bump with Eagles defender Brad Sheppard.
The 26-year-old initially stayed in the middle but a second contest saw him grimace again, visibly in pain, before he eventually came from the ground.
In a sense of deja vu, Hughes cradled his right shoulders as he went into the rooms to receive medial assistance, before being removed from the game.
Minutes after Chapman’s shoulder injury, West Coast’s number two ruck Nathan Vardy went down into the rooms in the hands of trainers.
Vardy appeared to injure his right lower leg and didn’t reappear from the rooms until quarter-time.
The premiership big man’s involvement in the game is crucial for the Eagles’ structure, with Oscar Allen unable to provide Nic Naitanui with ruck support due to being used down back.
Allen’s move to the backline comes amid a defensive crisis, with Shannon Hurn (calf), Jeremy McGovern (groin) and Tom Barrass (shoulder) all missing for today’s match.
Adding insult to injury, Jarrod Brander had his left ankle overstretched in a James Aish tackle.
Fremantle forward Michael Frederick soccered a goal in the square but had his ankle badly twisted in Allen’s attempt to smother the ball over the line.
The injuries continued to pile up for both sides throughout the bruising encounter.
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