A two-week break could not be more timely for Aussie rules convert Karmichael Hunt who hobbled off the ground late in Gold Coast’s VFL game against the Box Hill Hawks at Southport on Saturday.
Hunt, who will be rested for the next fortnight before returning to a midfield role, very gingerly made his own way to the bench 21 minutes into the final term, pointing to his groin, after four quarters at full back.
Trainers massaged Hunt’s adductors for a few minutes and he seemed ok, even signing autographs afterwards, suggesting his problems are more tightness and stress related than a serious muscle injury.
Gold Coast coach Guy McKenna shed little light on the problem at his post match press conference although conceded his publicity magnet did need a couple of weeks off to freshen-up.
“I haven’t spoken to the medical staff, but he’s due for a rest and looking at his eye he is going to deserve one,” McKenna said.
It was Hunt’s third match with the GCFC and it was possibly his best, but by no means is he even close to being a senior AFL prospect.
He minded seven opponents and finished with three kicks, three handpasses, two marks, one free against, one spoil and conceded a goal when he was clearly outpositioned by Jordan Lisle.
Of Hunt’s seven opponents, Lisle, one four Hawthorn listed players, made it his mission to drag Hunt up the ground at every opportunity.
Unlike last week against Broadbeach, when Hunt rarely ventured outside the defensive 50m arc, he was regularly sighted inside the centre square, at times on the wing.
“I think his game was again better today,” McKenna said.
“There were some good contests, there certainly was plenty of action down there.
“I’m not sure of his GPS, but he clocked up some Ks (kilometres today), McKenna said.
With his three kicks Hunt showed he at least has the kicking skill, albeit only with his preferred right foot.
When under pressure on the boundary line he pin pointed a 40m pass to skipper Marc Lock, hitting hit him smack on the chest.
However, Hunt is clueless when he just off the contest and the ball is in dispute or when a pack is starting gather as the ball heads into his zone.
His playing instinct and knowledge will only evolve in time but, as he has only a handful of games remaining this year and a few practice matches next year, he is in a race against time for round one 2011.