Essendon forward Will Snelling will require surgery on his thumb after suffering a fracture during the Bombers' 17-point win over West Coast.

The 23-year-old, who has played every game since round one last season, faces a medium-term recovery period.


Head of high performance Sean Murphy said Snelling would have a clearer rehabilitation timeframe once he completes surgery.

“‘Snell’ (Snelling) halfway through the game copped an injury to his thumb (which turned out to be) a fracture,” Murphy told Dons Digital’s Liberty Financial Performance Update.

“He did an amazing job to able to play through that and it just shows you his team-first character to get out there and still perform.

“He’ll go in to have surgery over the coming days, and then post that we’ll have a bit of a timeline on a return to play."

Key forward Peter Wright is unlikely to play in Essendon’s Dreamtime in Perth game after being a late withdrawal last week with a calf complaint.

Aaron Francis, who was also a late out due to illness, will be available for selection.

Murphy said Wright would potentially look to use the scheduled round 13 bye as an extra week to recover.

“'Wrighty' (Wright) had a bit of a calf complaint,” Murphy said.

“It was precautionary heading into the game, and we’ll see how this week goes, but he’s probably more unlikely this week.

“That will give him a couple of weeks with the bye coming up to get that right.”

Forward-turned-defender Jayden Laverde will be a 50-50 chance to play in the Dons’ Saturday night clash with Richmond after being subbed off with a knee complaint.

The 57-gamer, who also copped a brutal knock to the nose, will look to prove his fitness at training this week and continue his scintillating form.

Jayden Laverde came off a little worse for wear on Saturday night. (Photo: AFL Photos)

“He (Laverde) had a bit of a knee complaint which came on during the game and (after he) just landed heavily (on it),” Murphy said.

“We ended up subbing him out of the game late. We’ll see how that pans out over the week.

“He was off legs today, so we’ll see him in main training and see how he goes, but he is touch-and-go for this week.

“(He also) copped that whack to the nose, so he probably looks like he’s been in a boxing fight. He did really well to keep working through it.”

Murphy also touched on updates to Brandon Zerk-Thatcher and Aaron Francis, while exampling stellar high-performance efforts from Zach Merrett, Darcy Parish and Archie Perkins.

Watch round 12’s Liberty Financial Performance Update below.

04:08 Mins
Published on

Performance update | Round 12

Head of high performance Sean Murphy provides a performance update ahead of round 12.

Published on


Aaron Francis Illness Available
Peter Wright Calf Test
Jayden Laverde Knee Test
Devon Smith Hamstring Short term
Tom Cutler Calf Short term
Will Snelling Thumb Medium term
Dylan Clarke Ankle Medium term
Dylan Shiel Knee Medium term
Michael Hurley Illness Long term
Jye Caldwell Hamstring Long term
Irving Mosquito Knee Long term
Kaine Baldwin Knee Long term
Updated Tuesday, June 1