Sharrod Wellingham’s season appears over, with the out-of-form Eagles midfielder to miss up to six weeks with a knee injury.
The 26-year-old suffered a lateral meniscus tear to his right knee after injuring the joint playing for WAFL affiliate East Perth at Medibank Stadium on Saturday.
He will miss a minimum of four weeks with the injury, but with West Coast having just five matches left and virtually certain to miss finals he is unlikely to be rushed back even under the best-case scenario.
The injury was sustained in a contest on the Leederville ground’s far wing during a match played in heavy mud and large pools of groundwater.
Wellingham had been particularly quiet in gathering just five disposals before suffering the injury.
The setback is the latest chapter in an underwhelming return from the Collingwood premiership player since joining West Coast at the end of 2012 in what appeared a successful trading coup at the time.
Wellingham has been dropped by the Eagles three times this season and criticised by coach Adam Simpson for not performing to his potential.
He has averaged 17 disposals and kicked five goals from 13 matches this year.
It comes on the back of a 2013 season where injuries cost the midfielder a regular run in the line-up. A pre-season trampoline accident followed by a separate ankle injury restricted him to 10 games in his debut season at West Coast.
The saving grace for Wellingham at a time when Simpson is weighing up the futures of underperforming players on his list comes in the form of his contract.
He still has a year to go on the three-year deal signed when joining West Coast, leaving the club with at least one more season to turn their recruit into a success.
Luke Shuey (ankle), Dean Cox (concussion) and Ashley Smith (thigh) will also face fitness tests to be declared available for Saturday’s clash against the Crows at Adelaide Oval.
Cox, 32, is almost certain to be rested to pave the way for Scott Lycett’s return to the line-up.