Clark set to miss Cats’ clash with Bombers

Mitch Clark is set to miss Geelong’s crunch clash with Essendon on Saturday night due to a calf injury.

Off-season recruits Clark and Rhys Stanley (corked quad) were injured in the Cats’ 56-point loss to West Coast last Sunday.

Both remain in doubt for the weekend’s Etihad Stadium encounter, but coach Chris Scott was more pessimistic about the former Melbourne forward.

“We haven’t made the call just yet,” Scott said of Clark on Wednesday.

“At the moment we’re probably working towards a recovery or rehab program that gets him going in a week or two, but he’s unlikely for this week.

“It’s not serious.

“But they can’t definitively tell us it’s only going to be a one-weeker.”

Stanley’s omission would leave the club’s rucks stocks threadbare, with Hamish McIntosh, Dawson Simpson and Nathan Vardy all sidelined due to injury.

Scott noted Josh Walker could be recalled and support Mark Blicavs in the ruck, while rookie Michael Luxford is a chance of debuting.

The 20-year-old excelled at basketball in his junior sporting career and was part of the Australian under-17 world championship team that won a silver medal in 2012.

Luxford was signed as a ‘Category B’ rookie by Geelong the following year, the same path beaten by former steeplechaser Blicavs.

“He’s an interesting case study. If it weren’t for Mark Blicavs we’d be talking about how remarkable it is,” Scott said.

“But you can’t keep talking about these unique situations when you keep rolling them out.

“Mick didn’t play much football at all … he decided to give footy a chance before he pursued basketball overseas.

“He came in with a very similar attitude to that of Mark Blicavs, which was if it was to work he needed to learn as much as he could about the game and fully immerse himself in the AFL and Geelong culture, which he’s done.”

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