Essendon may be boosted by the likely returns of both Cale Hooker and Orazio Fantasia over the next fortnight as they continue their recovery from calf injuries. 

Head of medical services David Rundle said the pair would build up their running loads over the next week before reintegrating with the main training group. 

“Both Cale and Orazio are doing very well," Rundle said.

"Whilst they both do have calf strains, their pathologies are somewhat different, so they’re being managed differently with their programs. They’ve both commenced running and they’ll need to build their running loads over the next week or so before they rejoin with the main group."

02:37 Mins
Published on

Injury update | Rd 10

Head of medical services David Rundle provides an update on our injured players ahead of round 10.

Published on

After overcoming a long-term stress fracture in his foot, exciting youngster Harrison Jones will make his long-awaited return to the main training group this week as he pushes for senior selection in 2020.

“Harrison has joined us in great shape here in the hub. He will be training fully with the group and should play some minutes this week in the match simulation,” Rundle said. 

Harrison Jones, the Bombers' top draft pick of 2019, is expected to play in a scratch match against the Giants on Friday. (Photo: AFL Photos)

Joe Daniher and Dyson Heppell join fellow All Australians Hooker and Jake Stringer on the sidelines.

Rundle said Daniher and Heppell were making pleasing progress from calf and ankle injuries respectively.

“Joe has made excellent progress following that calf injury. He’ll be integrating back in with the group this week and we’ll keep a close eye on him over the next couple of weeks,” he said.

“It’s been six weeks now since Dyson fractured his ankle and had surgery. He’s probably progressed faster than what I expected from last week and he’s commenced running now, so things are looking good for him. It will be another three to four weeks in building his running loads before he joins in with the main group.” 

Stringer and Patrick Ambrose have rejoined the entire playing group at the RACV Royal Pines Resort on the Gold Coast, having been cleared from quarantine after arriving from Victoria. 


“Jake has joined us in the hub now and he’s progressing well," Rundle said.

"It’s been four weeks since his syndesmosis injury. His ankle range is excellent, and his strength is good but it’s not quite at the level of where we would like it to be before we start running him, but they should not be too far off.

“Pat is five weeks now since he injured his mid-foot, with that Lisfranc injury. He’s fully weight bearing in that boot which hopefully we can remove in a week or so to start strengthening that area.” 

Rundle said Essendon forward Jayden Laverde underwent successful surgery last week in Brisbane, with the 24-year-old now progressing in his rehabilitation to ankle mobility exercises.  

“Jayden had his ankle syndesmosis injury surgically stabilised six days ago in Brisbane. The operation went very well and yesterday we removed the dressings and the plaster. He’s now been put into a boot which he’ll wear for the next 10 days or so," he said.

“He has started some ankle mobility exercises and even started doing some upper body weights. But he’s likely to be out for another six to seven weeks.”


Cale Hooker Calf 2-3 weeks
Orazio Fantasia Calf 2-3 weeks
Jake Stringer Syndesmosis 3-4 weeks
Jayden Laverde Syndesmosis 6-7 weeks
Patrick Ambrose Foot Indefinite
Lachlan Johnson Knee Indefinite
Joe Daniher Groin/Calf Indefinite
Dyson Heppell Ankle Indefinite
Tom Hird Foot Indefinite
Updated Tuesday, August 4