St Kilda have been hit by the news Jack Hayes has been ruled out for the rest of the 2022 AFL campaign after suffering an ACL injury.
Saints are priced at 13/1 to win the grand final this season but will have to do it without Hayes after the club’s worst fears were confirmed by scans.
Hayes picked up the injury to his left knee in the victory over Greater Western Sydney on Friday and there were immediate fears he had done his ACL.
The club have now confirmed he has ruptured the ACL and that means a lengthy spell on the sidelines. Speaking after the game coach Brett Ratten said they would look after him and sort out a new contract.
The 25-year-old has only just arrived at St Kilda and was having an impressive debut campaign before disaster struck.
He impressed on his debut in round when booting three goals but unfortunately that is his season done after just five games.
St Kilda will now support him through his rehabilitation and are backing him to come back strong.
"Injuries like this are always difficult, but this one seems particularly cruel," St Kilda football boss David Rath said.
"Jack’s journey to the AFL was long and unconventional, but ever since joining our club he really grabbed his opportunity with both hands.
"Knowing Jack will miss the rest of the year is disappointing, but as a club we’ll wrap our arms around him and make sure he’s got all the support he needs throughout his rehab."