Essendon is hopeful Jake Stringer has avoided a serious hamstring strain after the forward was subbed out in the third term of the two-point loss to Greater Western Sydney on Saturday. 

Stringer was seen clutching his leg in the first term, then spent most of the next two quarters lined up in the forward pocket with his movement clearly restricted.

The 27-year-old had little impact on the game after quarter-time, only adding one kick to his four first-quarter disposals, and was eventually replaced by medical substitute Matt Guelfi in the third term. 

"He was kind of good enough, but not quite. We tried to persist with him a bit, but in the end we had the sub there," coach Ben Rutten said after the match.

"We'll need to wait and get some more information before we know the detail on Stringer. He was still functioning OK, so we're not sure the extent of it."

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Rd 8 | Rutten post-game

Senior coach Ben Rutten spoke to the media after our round eight match against GWS.

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Despite the Bombers' loss, Zach Merrett was one of the best players on the ground with 37 disposals and 13 inside 50s in his 150th game. 

The 2017 All-Australian midfielder was on the receiving end of some special attention from the Giants, none more so than when Jeremy Finlayson caught him late and high with a raised forearm in the first term. 

Rutten said that Merrett wasn't showing any ill-effects from the incident.

"He's a warrior for us, he's such a strong competitor, I can understand why other teams might be targeting him at times," he said.

"The way he persisted and persevered, in his 150th game, [showed] he's been a fantastic leader for us every game this season and tonight was no exception.

"[In] the last five minutes of the first quarter, when the momentum was against us, I thought a couple of tackles and a couple of efforts from Zach was what just started to shift that momentum."

The Bombers will look to get back on the winners list when they host Fremantle at Marvel Stadium next Sunday.