Fractured cheekbone to sideline key Hawk
HAWTHORN'S devastating second-half blitz of the Western Bulldogs on Saturday night has come at a significant cost with star ruckman Ben McEvoy likely to miss an extended period after suffering a suspected fracture of the cheekbone.
McEvoy was rushed to hospital soon after a bone-crunching head clash with Bulldog Josh Dunkley during the final quarter of the Hawks' 63-point win.
Coach Alastair Clarkson on Saturday night said the club was almost certain he would require surgery if their initial diagnosis is correct.
"He's been taken to hospital and I don't think we can fudge anything with this one, I think he has got a fracture of the cheekbone," Clarkson said.
"I think that will be the diagnosis and if that is the case, he will probably require surgery and miss whatever weeks is required to get that fixed.
"We don't really know the severity of it all, but when the doc says he better jump in an ambulance or a car and get himself to hospital pretty quickly, I would suggest he is going to miss some games."
The ruckman's injury was the sour note on what was an otherwise good night for the Hawks as they pushed back into the top eight - possibly only until the end of Sunday - with a strong win over the Bulldogs.
It came off the back of six goals from Luke Breust and four goals each to Jarryd Roughead and Jack Gunston.
Importantly, they added almost five per cent with the impressive 12-goal-to-two second half whitewash, and kicked their highest score of the season.
The Hawks can remain in the eight if West Coast defeats Greater Western Sydney and North Melbourne doesn't win handsomely against Gold Coast on Sunday.
Clarkson said it was the best forward line performance of the season.
"I don't think we have kicked 19 goals for an amount of time, so that was pleasing with Roughead, Gunston and Breust all getting on the scoreboard."
"We just got better movement of the footy in the second half."
Clarkson described Breust's four-goal first term as "pretty special".
"I think he kicked four (goals) in the first (quarter), didn't he? So he was on track to kick 16," Clarkson said with a smile.
"It was him (Breust) in the first quarter and then it was 'Roughy' and 'Gunners' as the game wore on."
Clarkson was pleased with the way his team was able to shutdown Jason Johannisen in the second half, after he had helped himself to 25 touches in the first half.
He said it was a team effort, but gave some praise to youngster Harry Morrison, who helped to keep him quiet.
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