Echuca high-flyer Ruory Kirkby’s Goulburn Valley League campaign is likely over before it has started.
Kirkby came from the field in Saturday’s practice match against Northcote Park with a knee complaint, which his physio confirmed as an anterior cruciate ligament injury.
Coach Simon Maddox said at this stage, Kirkby was not in the team’s immediate plans.
‘‘It’s thought to be an ACL, he definitely won’t play this week for a start,’’ he said.
‘‘If it is confirmed to be an ACL, that would obviously be his season over.
‘‘That’s the physio’s opinion, and Ruory’s just waiting for his scans to see a specialist and won’t know for sure until then.
‘‘At this stage that’s the early diagnosis, but he still has to take the MRIs to the surgeon’s.’’
Kirkby played his junior football with Echuca before a prolific stint in South Australian National Football League, where he kicked 270 goals for Glenelg.
And he wasted little time making an impact back with the Murray Bombers, leading the club’s goal-kicking last year with 51.
Disappointed to lose a key player, Maddox admitted the club would have to lean on its versatility with its forward planning largely out the window.
‘‘One of our strengths is our versatility; (Andrew) Walker can go forward, (Daniel) Willis can, (Kane) Morris can play deep forward, (Cam) Valentine and (Tim) Allan as well,’’ he said.