Infotainment Factory: Eagles hit with injury worry ahead of Grand Final

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Monday, 24 September 2018

Eagles hit with injury worry ahead of Grand Final


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West Coast coach Adam Simpson is confident Jeremy McGovern will play in Saturday's grand final against Collingwood, but he stopped short of giving an iron-clad guarantee.

McGovern, who copped a knee to the hip in the preliminary final win over Melbourne, was the only notable no-show at the club's open training session at Subiaco Oval on Monday.

Simpson said the three-time All-Australian would be nursed through this week in order to have him ready to take on Collingwood at the MCG.

McGovern is the AFL's intercept king, and the Eagles desperately need him out there on Saturday to curb the influence of 211cm Magpie Mason Cox.

When asked if McGovern was in any doubt for the grand final, Simpson replied: "No, not at this point.

 McGovern was unseen at the Eagles' training session on Monday

"It's just a hip-pointer. Just a corky - a big one. We're doing everything we can to get that right.

"We'll keep you informed. We won't be playing any games, that's for sure. If he's not right, he's not right. But at the moment, I think he's going to be fine."

West Coast will hold a closed training session on Wednesday and will fly to Melbourne on Thursday.

Simpson hopes McGovern will be able to train later in the week.

"He doesn't normally train too much," Simpson said with a smile.

 Despite slight concern about his ankle, Luke Shuey trained freely

"If he gets to the captain's run, he's done a good job normally. He's one we manage a lot."

Star midfielder Luke Shuey dispelled any doubts about his injured left ankle by training freely during Monday's light session in front of more than 12,000 fans.

Twelve players from West Coast's 2015 grand final loss to Hawthorn are set to front up against the Magpies on Saturday.

The Eagles copped a 46-point hammering that day, with a number of the team's biggest stars like Jack Darling and Josh Kennedy suffering a case of stage fright.

Simpson played down talk some players might still be carrying demons from that capitulation.

 McGovern will be essential in the Eagles' attempts to stop American forward Mason Cox

"There's no redemption conversation - there's nothing like that," Simpson said.

"We've played in two finals series since then, so we've moved on. It was just so long ago. We're a different side now.

"I know there's some players who played in that game. But that should be a good experience to reflect on.

"Obviously we didn't play well and we didn't win. But the experience they went through with the experience of the week - I think it's a positive."

 Dynamic Eagles forwards Lewis Jetta and Liam Ryan were all smiles on the training track

Simpson was tight lipped about whether tagger Mark Hutchings would be given the job on Steele Sidebottom, who gathered 41 disposals in Collingwood's shock 39-point win over Richmond.

Adam Treloar, Taylor Adams and Scott Pendlebury are other options Hutchings could be assigned to.

"You look at possessions, you look at influence, you look at the spiritual connection a player has," Simpson said of his thought process when assigning a hard tag.

West Coast coach Adam Simpson is confident Jeremy McGovern will play in Saturday's grand final against Collingwood, but he stopped short of giving an iron-clad guarantee.

McGovern, who copped a knee to the hip in the preliminary final win over Melbourne, was the only notable no-show at the club's open training session at Subiaco Oval on Monday.

Simpson said the three-time All-Australian would be nursed through this week in order to have him ready to take on Collingwood at the MCG.

McGovern is the AFL's intercept king, and the Eagles desperately need him out there on Saturday to curb the influence of 211cm Magpie Mason Cox.

When asked if McGovern was in any doubt for the grand final, Simpson replied: "No, not at this point.

 McGovern was unseen at the Eagles' training session on Monday

"It's just a hip-pointer. Just a corky - a big one. We're doing everything we can to get that right.

"We'll keep you informed. We won't be playing any games, that's for sure. If he's not right, he's not right. But at the moment, I think he's going to be fine."

West Coast will hold a closed training session on Wednesday and will fly to Melbourne on Thursday.

Simpson hopes McGovern will be able to train later in the week.

"He doesn't normally train too much," Simpson said with a smile.

 Despite slight concern about his ankle, Luke Shuey trained freely

"If he gets to the captain's run, he's done a good job normally. He's one we manage a lot."

Star midfielder Luke Shuey dispelled any doubts about his injured left ankle by training freely during Monday's light session in front of more than 12,000 fans.

Twelve players from West Coast's 2015 grand final loss to Hawthorn are set to front up against the Magpies on Saturday.

The Eagles copped a 46-point hammering that day, with a number of the team's biggest stars like Jack Darling and Josh Kennedy suffering a case of stage fright.

Simpson played down talk some players might still be carrying demons from that capitulation.

 McGovern will be essential in the Eagles' attempts to stop American forward Mason Cox

"There's no redemption conversation - there's nothing like that," Simpson said.

"We've played in two finals series since then, so we've moved on. It was just so long ago. We're a different side now.

"I know there's some players who played in that game. But that should be a good experience to reflect on.

"Obviously we didn't play well and we didn't win. But the experience they went through with the experience of the week - I think it's a positive."

 Dynamic Eagles forwards Lewis Jetta and Liam Ryan were all smiles on the training track

Simpson was tight lipped about whether tagger Mark Hutchings would be given the job on Steele Sidebottom, who gathered 41 disposals in Collingwood's shock 39-point win over Richmond.

Adam Treloar, Taylor Adams and Scott Pendlebury are other options Hutchings could be assigned to.

"You look at possessions, you look at influence, you look at the spiritual connection a player has," Simpson said of his thought process when assigning a hard tag.

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