Main content

Waite and see

North Melbourne spearhead Jarrad Waite is not frustrated by his latest injury blow and says it won't play any part in whether he plays on in 2019. 

North announced on Wednesday morning Waite would be sidelined indefinitely after re-injuring his calf at training this week.

The 35-year-old has not played since injuring the same muscle in the warm-up before the round 11 match against Brisbane. 

He had been in outstanding form prior to this, kicking 22 goals in nine games and excelling in occasional roles up the ground.

However, the former Blue now finds himself in familiar territory, having played just 14 and 10 games in 2016 and 2017 respectively.

With his contract set to expire at the end of this season, Waite could be forgiven for being frustrated by his latest setback. But the forward is refusing to dwell on it.

"It is what it is. If I get frustrated that's not going to help me or help the team. If I get frustrated then I potentially do things too early and that's when stuff can really hit the fan," Waite said. 

"So (I'm) not frustrated at all. I'll just day by day see how it goes and how it recovers from doing things. 

"I want to get back and play some good footy for the club this year and I'll work out next year next year." 

Meanwhile, North is expecting to regain Jed Anderson for Saturday night's clash against the Western Bulldogs at Etihad Stadium, with the midfielder having recovered well from the hamstring injury he suffered early in the Roos' win over Brisbane. 

"Jed should be available, he'll fully train today," North coach Brad Scott said on Wednesday. 

"He's had a really good (round 13) bye training block and he was very close to playing (against Geelong in round 12). 

"But like Jarrad it just didn't make sense to play him when there was some risk and now he's through that and put some really good blocks of training together."

Scott said Anderson could be a direct replacement for Waite this round, but if North opts to go for a like-for-like replacement second-year key forward Nick Larkey is firmly in the mix. 

"It will depend on the way that we want to structure up the team, but we've certainly given it a lot of thought and we'll train today and give it some more thought," Scott said. 

"(Larkey) has been in good form in the VFL and he's a really important developing player for us and shown some really good signs. 

"In essence if it's just can we play Nick Larkey the answer is yes. But it's whether we can fit it in with the system we want to play."

Larkey played two senior games in his debut season but the outstanding form of Ben Brown and Waite has kept him out of North's team to date in 2018. 

The 20-year-old sits equal second on the VFL's goalkicking ladder this year with 25 majors from nine games.

The views in this article are those of the author and not necessarily those of the AFL or its clubs