Fraser injury not bad, says Pies coach - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Fraser injury not bad, says Pies coach

By Roger Vaughan 17/07/2009 05:08:50 PM Comments (0)

Collingwood coach Mick Malthouse is expecting only a short absence from the AFL for ruckman Josh Fraser.

One of Collingwood's most important players will miss the match on Saturday night against Hawthorn with a knee injury.

Fraser limped off in the last quarter of Friday night's one-point win over the Western Bulldogs.

He managed to return to the field for the last few minutes and Malthouse was initially optimistic post-match that Fraser was alright.

Fraser initially suffered a posterior cruciate ligament injury in last year's one-off AFL Hall Of Fame match.

"He was very close to playing. It's not bad," Malthouse said on Friday.

"We pick our best side. He's close, but he's not close enough.

"Players have to feel very comfortable in themselves."

Malthouse added the medical staff ruled out Fraser before the player or match committee had any say.

He also said the Magpies were definitely not taking the luxury of resting Fraser, given they are in the top four.

"It didn't get past medical because they thought it (the knee) was a little bit restricted," he said.

"We can't afford to ease back. We've got to pick the best side that we possibly can every week."

The Magpies recalled ruckman Cameron Wood and key defender Nathan Brown for Fraser and Sharrod Wellingham, who was dropped.

They are taking a seven-game winning streak into the Hawthorn match. It's their best winning run since the 1990 premiership.

Malthouse said settling the side had been a major factor in Collingwood's mid-season surge.

Earlier this year, they looked in big trouble with a 3-5 record.

"We're in reasonable form," he said.

"We can be better, but that's the nature of round 15 coming into round 16, we want some leeway to get better.

"Players become used to each other and that's so significant in today's football ... you get a better result."

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