Hird set for AFL return against Bulldogs - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Hird set for AFL return against Bulldogs

By Guy Hand 23/05/2005 08:05:51 PM Comments (0)

Essendon skipper James Hird is expected to return from injury to lead his struggling AFL side against the Western Bulldogs at Telstra Dome on Sunday.

Hird strained his hamstring in round six against Brisbane, but trained well last week and was considered for inclusion in the Bombers' 17-point loss to Port Adelaide in Adelaide last weekend.

Instead, the Bombers have decided to wait until this weekend's round 10 clash before unleashing Hird.

The Bulldogs will have Chris Grant available for the match after he was cleared of any serious shoulder damage after falling awkwardly during the third quarter of his side's loss to Sydney on Sunday.

Richmond defender Joel Bowden is expected to miss just one match after fracturing his cheekbone in the Tigers' upset of Brisbane at the Gabba on Saturday.

Tigers officials said Bowden had surgery late on Monday to repair the injury.

They're confident he will miss only the Tigers' match against Melbourne at Telstra Dome on Friday night and will be fit for the round 11 clash with West Coast.

Richmond's reigning best and fairest player, Bowden sustained the injury in an accidental head clash with teammate Chris Hyde, who himself had just returned from a fractured skull following a head clash last month.

Hyde wore headgear, something Bowden felt may have helped lessen his own injury.

"It's just a personal thing - whether the swelling goes down and whether I feel up to playing footy," Bowden told the Ten Network.

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