The Richmond Tigers have moved on from the pre-season retirement of Alex Rance quickly, if media speculation is to be believed, and set their sights on out-of-contract Collingwood defender Darcy Moore.
Collingwood big man Mason Cox is the latest Magpie to be grounded for the AFL season.
The towering American suffered a tear of his retina in his left eye during Collingwood’s easy win over Gold Coast on Sunday, which requires season-ending surgery.
He joins Dayne Beams on the sidelines, who has brought forward shoulder surgery to officially end his 2019 campaign.
Beams has endured a torrid time on his return to Collingwood after a four-season stint in Brisbane, undergoing mid-year hip surgery before standing down from the team for mental health reasons.
His decision to go under the knife on Monday gives the 2010 flag -winner his best chance of a full pre-season for 2020 campaign.
While Collingwood had soldiered on without Beams since round 11, Cox’s absence is more significant for their finals campaign.
The 211cm forward might has not been in fine form but has retained his place in Nathan Buckley’s side due to his structural importance and the lack of other options.
Frustratingly for both player and club, a visit to a specialist on Monday morning confirmed Cox would need surgery.
“You don’t take risks with situations like this,” Collingwood football boss Geoff Walsh said.
“After the surgery he will need a number of weeks rest which means that he will not play again this season.
“It is obviously a disappointment, especially for Mason, but importantly he is expected to make a complete recovery.”
With the longest injury list in the AFL, Nathan Buckley’s side were 10-3 but have since lost four of their past six games to fall to sixth spot.
They face seventh-placed Essendon and eighth-placed Adelaide in their final two rounds of the regular season, meaning further falls are possible.