AFL ladder leaders North Melbourne have lost defender Sam Wright for up to two months because of ankle surgery.
Wright suffered a left ankle sprain early in Friday night’s win over Richmond.
The Kangaroos announced on Monday that Wright will have an operation later this week to repair ligament damage and he’ll be out of action for six to eight weeks.
The 25-year-old also missed three matches last month with an injury to his right ankle.
“After having just spent a month on the sidelines having injured his opposite ankle, it’s a tough blow for Sam but we expect him back in time for any potential finals campaign,” said North football manager Geoff Walsh.
“We’re hopeful he’ll only miss six to eight weeks.”
Last month, North lost star utility Shaun Higgins for about 12 weeks because of knee surgery.
A knee injury also forced their No.1 ruckman Todd Goldstein to miss the Richmond game.
Meanwhile, coach Brad Scott is back at the club after illness put him in hospital last week.
Scott was on the way to the airport for the Hobart match when his condition became worse.
He was laid low with a virus and went to hospital as a precaution.
Assistant Darren Crocker coached the team on Friday night and also led Monday’s post-game review.
Scott plans to take over training again from Tuesday.