Western Bulldogs AFLW number one draft pick set to return against Fremantle

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She was one of many her aspect’s greatest of their opening 26-point win towards the Dockers final season, the next spherical kicking back-to-back objectives inside a minute towards the Lions earlier than tearing her ACL.

There have been fears in December that she had suffered a 3rd profession ACL damage when she went down clutching her proper knee in coaching.

Subsequent scans revealed it was only a minor knee sprain, with Huntington then admitting her “huge reduction” at avoiding one other vital setback and focusing on a return for this week’s spherical 5 conflict with the Dockers.

A loss in Fremantle on Saturday would go away the Bulldogs two wins behind the Dockers with two rounds remaining, successfully dashing the Canines’ finals aspirations.

Whereas they started this season in the identical vein as final with wins over Adelaide and Geelong, a 53-22 drubbing by the hands of North Melbourne in spherical three was adopted by a 49-17 defeat to Brisbane of their grand closing rematch at Whitten Oval final week.

Huntington, who graduated yr 12 with an ATAR of 98.10 in 2017, just lately detailed the emotional toll of her ACL rehabilitation to The Age.

Huntington (centre) is regarded as one of the AFLW's best young players.

Huntington (centre) is thought to be one of many AFLW’s greatest younger gamers.Credit score:AAP

Following her sidelining in February final yr, she shaped an “ACL membership” with fellow big-name gamers Melissa Hickey, Brianna Davey, Sarah Lampard and Ainslie Kemp that recurrently supported each other.

The Bulldog’s return can be a uncommon constructive piece of damage information for a contest that has already misplaced 18-year-old primary draft choose Nina Morrison (Geelong) to an damage suffered an coaching shortly after her best-on-ground, 22-disposal efficiency in spherical one.

Shae Sloane (Melbourne), Rhi Metcalfe (Adelaide), Elise Coventry (Geelong) and, most just lately, Fremantle debutant Brianna Moyes have additionally suffered ACL accidents this yr.

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Golf equipment have this yr carried out particular coaching packages to keep away from ACL issues, together with preparation motion workouts to assist with touchdown and deceleration.

The AFL is constant to collaborate with La Trobe College on analysis into ACL prevention and restoration.

Huntington has additionally beforehand identified that on prime of physiological variations to males, AFLW gamers are at higher threat of ACL accidents as they’re contracted for simply 13 hours week and most concurrently work full-time.

Michael is a reporter for The Age.

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