Making the finals became that much harder for Queensland’s AFL clubs after two players from each side went down with injuries in Saturday night’s derby won by the Brisbane Lions at the Gabba.
Brisbane drew level with the Gold Coast on five wins in their (116) to 12.11 (83) victory to keep the club’s flickering finals hopes alive, but injuries again cruelled the loss with Brent Maloney hurting his leg and Mitch Golby leaving the field coughing up blood after a hit from Steven May.
The Suns, already missing star captain Gary Ablett – who was a late scratching with a calf injury – Karmichael Hunt, Charlie Dixon and Tom Lynch lost Sam Day (groin) and Dan Gorringe (shoulder).
It was a brave effort from Brisbane who ran away with the match with a five goal final term with just two fit substitutes on the bench, but now coach Michael Voss faces a nervous wait to see the extent of Maloney and Golby’s injuries.
“It’s too early with both,” he said.
“All I know at this stage with Beamer (Maloney) is lower leg.
“Mitch Golby was coughing up a little bit of blood so it was a little bit unsafe for him to return.”
Lions star Simon Black also missed the match with a groin injury and Voss is unclear on when he will be fit to return.
“Can I say unlikely (to play next week)?” he said.
Suns coach Guy McKenna remains hopeful he will get his star midfielder in Ablett back next week, but is unlikely to have Day or Gorringe back for their next clash as the club fights for a maiden finals appearance.
Jonathan Brown may have a case to answer this week after collecting Gold Coast’s David Swallow in the jaw when the pair were contesting the ball near the sideline in the first half.
The Lions have a favourable run home with clashes against battlers St Kilda and Melbourne as well as the winless GWS, but coach Michael Voss wasn’t getting carried away with the win and said the finals were out of the players thinking.
“It’s four points, that’s all it is at this point in time,” he said.
“The guys have been working hard on the track, got the result, they should be really pleased with the effort.
“Since the bye we’ve played three teams in the top four and we’ve certainly held our own for long periods of time against those particular teams.
“We do have some (beatable) teams (coming up), but you don’t really lift your eyes too much except for what’s ahead of us.”
Mckenna hauled Jared Brennan back into the team despite indifferent form in the NEAFL on his comeback from a knee injury.
And the former Lion responded with three goals and 21 disposals.
“Obviously we’ll go to the tape but I would think he would be a pretty good starter for next week,” McKenna said.