DEFENDER Meg Downie will remain on the sidelines for the opening of the 2021 AFL Women’s season due to an ankle injury.
The 32-year-old went down during Melbourne’s practice match against Geelong earlier this month, and although it was initially thought to be mild, further assessment determined a high sprain.
Downie, who only played four games last season, is now not expected to be available for at least the next four weeks.
Despite the delayed start for their No.2, the Demons’ injury list is relatively light ahead of their 2021 campaign.
Draftee Isabella Simmons is the only other recent addition – she suffered an injury of a similar nature to Downie’s last week at training, albeit less severe.
The 18-year-old should be back to full fitness after a modified program this week.
Meanwhile, Sarah Lampard and Shae Sloane are making significant progress in their ACL recoveries.
Finishing off her final rehab phase, Lampard will aim to get some practice match minutes under her belt, setting her sights on a Round 3 return.
Sloane will be just a couple of weeks behind her, with both expected to be back in the side by Round 6.
The Dees’ AFLW High Performance Manager David Regan provided a further update on the latest episode of the Lil and Ben podcast.
Watch the full episode below.