K rock Football

Season in doubt for star Hawk

Drysdale veteran Ben Carmichael. (Sports Media Image/Marcel Berens)

DRYSDALE looks set to be without Ben Carmichael for the remainder of the BFL season after the midfielder underwent surgery on a ruptured foot ligament.

The 34-year-old suffered the injury to his right foot in the loss to Anglesea at Ellimatta Reserve on May 8.

It was operated on by orthopaedic surgeon Michael Galvin in Geelong on Tuesday.

“I went down to grab the ball at a stoppage, and I got my foot stood on, and my momentum went forward, and I heard a crack and pop in there,” Carmichael said.

“I tried to run it off, but it was no good.

“I strapped it up and tried to do a bit more, but it was no good.”

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Carmichael, one of the few remaining members of the club’s most premierships in 2009-10, initially thought he had broken his foot.

“The first MRI showed a lisfranc sprain and a rupture in the plantar plate,” he said.

“But when I had a second MRI, and once I went in for surgery, when they opened it up, they found it was fully ruptured, and they had to replace it with a new tendon.”

A veteran of 156 games with Drysdale, Carmichael will spend a fortnight on crutches and a further  5-6 weeks in a moon boot, making a return in 2021 “doubtful”.

“I’m not ruling it out, but at this stage, it will be hard to come back,” he said.

“But, I’m not ruling it out.”

Carmichael, a member of Leopold’s maiden GFL flag in 2016, says despite turning 35 in November, says retirement isn’t on the cards.

“You’ve got to start thinking if you can be active after footy,” he said. “But, you are a long time retired, so I’ll try and get everything out of myself.

“If I come through this footy injury well, I can’t see why I wouldn’t play again.

“But it’s something I’ll have to address when it comes to that stage.”

As an assistant coach to Luke Matthews, Carmichael will still have a role to play as the Hawks look to return to finals action for the first time since their 2013 grand final loss to Queenscliff.

“It’s obviously disappointing I’m not playing because I was starting to play some good footy,” he said.

“But, I’ve still got a role to play, and at my age, I really enjoy the coaching side of things.

“It’s not the end of the world.”

Twitter: @tom_king79