RICHMOND will be without a key trio for tomorrow night’s MCG blockbuster against Essendon.
Skipper Trent Cotchin, David Astbury and Dion Prestia will not feature as they all battle soreness.
None of the trio trained today.
Cotchin and Prestia are both battling hamstring soreness while Astbury is suffering some achilles soreness.
All three are expected to only miss one week.
Damien Hardwick faced the media this morning — before Cotchin and Astbury’s news was confirmed — and said that Prestia was left out as a “conservative approach”.
“He trained yesterday but we won’t push him. He’ll have an easier week this week,” he said.
“We’ll assess these things as they go along but we’re probably in the situation at the moment where we’ll probably take a really conservative approach with those players that need it and he’s one of those guys at present.”
ESSENDON expects key trio Cale Hooker, Brendon Goddard and Adam Saad to be available for Friday night’s crunch clash with AFL premiers Richmond. Saad trained with the main group on Thursday, six days after being concussed by a nasty high bump from St Kilda’s Nathan Brown.
Hooker and Goddard (knee) were absent but trained on Wednesday and are tipped to line up at the MCG with the 11th-placed Bombers still a chance to sneak into the top eight.
Taylor successfully completed a VFL match last weekend and says he’s feeling the best he has all year having battled ongoing foot problems.
“It was a cautious return I thought, but he did what he needed to do,” said Cats’ coach Chris Scott. “It was match practice for him rather than a performance-based process.”