Fremantle midfield linchpin David Mundy has been given the all-clear after an ankle injury scare at training at Fremantle Oval yesterday morning.
The 2010 Doig medallist, who had his 2011 season derailed by a "syndesmosis", or separation injury in his right ankle, raised alarm bells when he pulled up short during a stoppage drill and left the field flexing his troubled foot.
Teammate Garrick Ibbotson confirmed Mundy had the ankle in ice after the session, and the club then sent him for precautionary scans later in the day, but was relieved to report no serious damage.
Ibbotson labelled Mundy "massive" to the Dockers' midfield.
"We have got guys in there like Fyfey (Nat Fyfe) and Stephen Hill and Michael Barlow and Clancee Pearce had a good year last year, but to have someone who is a regular midfielder and a player of his class, his leadership makes a big difference," Ibbotson said.
Ibbotson is tipping a shift from midfield to defence for himself this year to cover the loss of veteran Adam McPhee, Greg Broughton and youngster Dylan Roberton.
"I think it (role) will change a bit," he said.
"I played a bit midfield last year with some defence as well but I think with losing Adam McPhee and a few other guys at the end of last season, I think I will play more defence.
"We have still got a lot of talls. We have got Michael Johnson and Luke McPharlin and Alex Silvagni and Zac Dawson and we still have the height there.
"I think running defender will be more of a position for me."
Ibbotson said his preparation was more advanced than at the same time last year.
"Compared to this time last year when I had come off two shoulder operations and a hernia and had been in rehab for almost the whole of the pre-season, so in comparison to last year I feel good," he said.
"I have had time to train with the whole group for the whole pre- season.
"We had a lot of guys in rehab this time last year and at the moment we have only got a few, so as far as having players on the field we are well above last year, and I think that having a full year under Ross (Lyon) last year has helped us coming into this year's pre-season."
He also predicted the club's top draft pick from last year's draft, Josh Simpson, was capable of making an impact this season.
"I am sure he can," Ibbotson said.
"He is a little bit light on and he will spend a bit of time putting some weight on in the gym, eating a lot, just eating, training and sleeping a lot, but I am sure that if he gets called upon he will be ready.
"He is one of those players that really plays with instinct, a little bit like Hayden Ballantyne."He runs around, he is all over the place, hard to catch and really just does what he thinks at the time and more often than not it is right. Not many people can move the way that he does and kick like he does."
Is Dermott Brereton right to say Adam Goodes gets a "good run" with the AFL tribunal?Vote
Do you have a story for us to investigate?
'The West Australian' is a trademark of West Australian Newspapers Limited 2013.
All rights reserved.
Select your state to see news for your area.