Having seen the injury, I find it hard to believe that Hansen won't miss at least 2-3 matches.
Hansen, Judd likely to miss final-round match
Digby Beacham | August 27, 2007
WEST COAST centre half-forward Ashley Hansen seems almost certain to miss this Saturday's clash with Essendon at Subiaco Oval after yet another injury setback.
And wounded captain Chris Judd is likely to be joining his premiership teammate on the sidelines for the clash with the Bombers as his groin complaint shows no signs of improving on the eve of the finals.
Hansen has had scans after limping from Telstra Dome late in the narrow win against St Kilda on Friday night and while the results of those won't be known until today, West Coast almost certainly will err on the side of caution even if the examination of the injury-plagued forward reveals no strain.
Crucial to the Eagles' structure and their hopes of defending last season's flag, Hansen has missed eight matches this year because of groin and finger injuries and faces a race against time to be at peak fitness for the finals.
It is a luxury that won't be afforded to Judd, who will have surgery for his injury after the season and has even taken to speaking to St Kilda midfielder Luke Ball, who has battled osteitis pubis and its complications for the best part of his career, for advice.
It is believed the Eagles' skipper visited a Melbourne hospital on Friday afternoon, only hours before he managed only 10 disposals.
In an indication the lingering injury continues to cause significant discomfort, the 2004 Brownlow medallist played only 86 of a possible 123 minutes and finished the match on the bench, even though the contest was up for grabs.
Port Adelaide's stirring last-gasp win over Geelong at Skilled Stadium yesterday leaves the Eagles in third position and needing to take care of Essendon and then play the waiting game for the Power's match against Fremantle that night to ascertain if they are at home or away in the first week of the finals.
West Coast is confident Norm Smith medallist Andrew Embley will have overcome his hamstring tear in time to resume in the first week of the finals, while premiership forward Steven Armstrong should be available after receiving a slight medial ligament strain in the win over Richmond in round 20.
West Coast will have to reach the grand final if explosive midfielder Daniel Kerr is to play again this year as he recovers from successful surgery to re-attach a ruptured tendon in his left ring finger.