Crows’ Crouch could return this AFL season | Ralph Lauren

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Adelaide hold hopes of Matt Crouch playing this AFL season after deeming the key midfielder’s groin surgery a success.

Crouch hasn’t played a premiership match this year because of groin issues linked to off-season hip surgery.

The 2017 club champion, who featured in pre-season games, initially tried to recover from the injury without surgery.

But after a setback last week, Crouch was sent for an operation to stabilise a tendon in his right groin.

Adelaide hierarchy expect Crouch to be sidelined a further 10 weeks and hopefully be available to play late in the season.

The Crows are due to play reigning premiers Richmond at the MCG on Sunday, though ticket sales have been halted as the Victorian government decides if Melbourne’s latest coronavirus outbreak impacts the crowd size.

Adelaide assistant coach Scott Burns said the Crows could be instructed to fly to Melbourne on game-day, rather than the day prior.

He said that, and the nature of the challenge of playing the Tigers on their home ground, was preferable to switching the game to Adelaide.

“A few boys are pretty keen to play at the ‘G actually, we have got a lot of blokes who haven’t played at the MCG,” Burns told reporters on Tuesday.

“(We have) got Richmond, two or three premiership stars coming back into that side by the looks of it as well, so they’re going to hungry, they’re going to be desperate.

“It’s a good challenge to go to the ‘G … if I had a preference, playing-wise, i would love to go to the ‘G to play Richmond.”

Burns said Crows players were buoyed by their shock one-point win over the previously unbeaten Melbourne on Saturday – a result mired in controversy.

The AFL on Monday admitted a late umpiring mistake when Crow Nick Murray wasn’t penalised for a deliberate out-of-bounds in the final seconds which would have given the Demons a shot at goal.

“”It’s really hollow for Melbourne supporters, isn’t it,” Burns said of the AFL admission.

“And it’s irrelevant to us. There’s so many decisions made in the last two or three minutes – some go your way, some don’t.”



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