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Aussie Rules: Saints duo to miss a month

St Kilda have on Monday confirmed key duo Jack Billings and Hunter Clark will miss at least the opening month of the 2022 AFL campaign.

St Kilda are priced at 8/5 to finish in the top eight but will have to begin the season without both players after they picked up injuries on Saturday.

Double blow

The duo picked up different injuries in the pre-season clash with Essendon on Saturday and scans have now revealed the full extent of the damage.

Clark damaged his shoulder following a collision with Bombers star Darcy Parish and it has now been revealed he has sprained the AC joint.

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Surgery will be needed to fix the problem and he will be missing for several weeks. The same can be said of Billings after he picked up a hamstring issue early in the game.

Chief Operating Officer Simon Lethlean confirmed the news and admits they could have done without the double blow on the eve of the season.

Disappointing setback

"Hunter and Jack will both miss at least a month of football," Lethlean told reporters on Monday. "For Hunter, it could be up to six weeks, we’ll just have to see how quickly he comes back after surgery.

"Injuries at this time of year are disappointing, but it’s a long season and we will give Hunter and Jack the time they require to get back to their best."

It is not the first blow St Kilda have suffered this pre-season. Paddy Ryder is not expected to make round one as he battles an Achilles issue.

Dan Hannebery is also a doubt while Zak Jones is unavailable.

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