GWS star Lachie Whitfield will miss Saturday's preliminary final against Collingwood after surgery to remove his appendix.
The smooth moving Whitfield was hospitalized on Wednesday morning with appendicitis, with GWS coach Leon Cameron confirming the news at a press conference.
The Giants are confident Whitfield will be available if the team makes it through to the Grand Final, but that task will be much more difficult.
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"We’re confident it will just be one week. "He obviously can't play this weekend but we will be doing everything in our power to win this weekend and give him the opportunity to return if we progress," Cameron said.
"It is what it is, these things happen. His health is more important than any game of footy. "
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It's another major blow to the Giants with Toby Greene suspended, pending an appeal on Thursday.
"You can`t replace Lachie Whitfield and Toby Greene but it does offer opportunities to guys who are itching to get out there and play their role. This group is very adaptable and we have learned to deal with lots of setbacks over the years, ”Cameron said.
“We’ll appeal Toby’s suspension because we believe we have a really strong case. We plan for Toby in and we also plan for Toby out. "
Whitfield was tagged well by Nick Robertson in last weekend's semi final win over Brisbane and was one of GWS 'best players in 2019.
He missed a month in the middle of the season after breaking his collarbone.