North Melbourne Tasmanian Kangaroo Ash Riddell will have surgery to repair an injured ankle this week.

The midfielder was bumped 40-metres off-the-ball by GWS defender Nicola Barr, causing her to land awkwardly and sustain a right ankle syndesmosis injury.

“Ash was having a terrific debut year and this is very disappointing for her,” North head of football operations Laura Kane told North Media.

“It’s likely she’ll need around six weeks to recover after the operation and we’ll do everything we can to get her back up to full speed as quickly as possible without compromising her long-term fitness and health.”

As a result of her off-the-ball hit, Barr was referred directly to the tribunal and suspended for one game for rough conduct.

The AFL's counsel, Jeff Gleeson QC, said the incident should be graded as severe contact and intentional. 

“Ash will be very hard to replace in our side, and we look forward to having her back as soon as she’s fit and ready,” Kane added.