O’Halloran up next for GWS after Ward’s injury blow

Shayne Hope |

Callan Ward may be out for two months for GWS after suffering a shoulder injury against Collingwood.
Callan Ward may be out for two months for GWS after suffering a shoulder injury against Collingwood.

Tough midfielder Callan Ward is expected to miss two months with a shoulder injury as Greater Western Sydney count the cost of their impressive season-opening win over Collingwood.

Ward damaged the AC joint in his right shoulder when he crashed to the turf under the weight of a Beau McCreery tackle during the second quarter at Engie Stadium on Saturday night.

The 33-year-old veteran will have scans on Sunday and Giants coach Adam Kingsley is bracing for bad news.

It comes with the GWS foundation player and former Western Bulldogs ball-winner Ward just four appearances away from reaching the 300-game milestone.

“He’ll be out of the game for a while. It’ll be a couple of months, I would think,” Kingsley said after his side’s 18.6 (114) to 11.16 (82) win over the Magpies.

“But we’ll wait and see which path we go, whether it’s surgery or whether it’s not.

“It’s a difficult situation for him, obviously disappointing to hurt your shoulder but with his 300th game approaching, he’s just going to have to wait a little longer unfortunately.”

Kingsley said he would back his midfield depth to cover Ward’s absence, with Xavier O’Halloran first cab off the rank after his solid showing against Collingwood.

“We’ll work out those answers,” Kingsley said.

“Xavier O’Halloran, I thought, played a really strong game tonight through the midfield and on the wing, so in the short-term I expect him to be the replacement.

“We’ll head to match committee and work out that next one. He’ll be a loss for us but we’ll cover it however we can in his absence.”

Ward’s setback follows serious knee injuries to Brisbane Lions defender Keidean Coleman and Carlton veteran Sam Docherty, who both ruptured anterior cruciate ligaments during the opening round.

Melbourne defender Jake Bowey will miss about eight weeks with a broken collarbone.