Hardwick unsure about Yarran’s AFL return

Richmond coach Damien Hardwick hopes off-season recruit Chris Yarran will have a productive career in the yellow and black.

But Hardwick isn’t sure when Yarran will play AFL again, with the former Carlton speedster currently dealing with a family issue.

Yarran, who left the Blues to sign a three-year deal with Richmond, is well short of match fitness.

The 25-year-old underwent foot surgery earlier this year, while a recurring calf problem ruined his pre-season.

“He’s had a rough patch,” Hardwick said on Friday.

“Chris obviously has some family issues that he’s working through at the moment. He’ll continue to work through those.

“He’s going to be a quality player for us for a long period of time. We just wish him the best and hope he can get back on the park for us at some stage.”

The timeline for Yarran’s return to regular training, let alone an AFL match, is unclear.

But Hardwick dismissed the notion that Yarran’s future at Punt Rd Oval is in doubt.

“Not at this stage, absolutely not,” Hardwick said.

“He’s a player we’re invested in and from our point of view we’re looking forward to seeing what he can present on the field.

“That’s probably not going to be in the short term, but we’re looking forward to seeing that.”

Hardwick added he was proud of the way the Tigers have tried to help Yarran deal with his private matter.

“Players come with issues all the time. The best place to be, in my opinion, is in a footy club,” Hardwick said.

“We’ve got fantastic people that provide really good resources in that area and we attack problems head on.”

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