The Demons remain hopeful Angus Brayshaw will feature later in their AFL finals campaign but are prioritising the midfielder’s health over his return to football.
Angus Brayshaw was concussed in a collision with Collingwood defender Brayden Maynard
Brayshaw has a history of head injuries, and has worn a helmet throughout his AFL career
Maynard has been sent directly to the tribunal in a case that has divided opinion across the league
Brayshaw will miss Friday night’s semifinal against Carlton at the MCG after he was knocked out in a botched smothering attempt by Collingwood’s Brayden Maynard.
Maynard collided with Brayshaw on Thursday night in an incident that led to a rough conduct charge, with the Magpies defender sent straight to the tribunal.
If Brayshaw clears concussion protocols he would be free to return in a preliminary final if Melbourne make it that far.
But teammate Christian Petracca said Brayshaw is “not going great” and is nursing a sore neck from Maynard’s impact.
“It will be based on what Gus is feeling and his symptoms,” Petracca told reporters on Sunday.
“If we win this week, fingers crossed Gus feels right to play in the prelim but I feel like … after I saw Gus and speaking to him … footy’s just one thing.
“It’s all about his health and you’ve got your brain for the rest of your life. Footy’s just a part of you.
“When I speak to him, I feel that it’s more than just footy. Whatever he wants to do, it’s up to him.”
Brayshaw, 27, has a prior history of concussion and wears a protective helmet when he plays.
Petracca and Melbourne captain Max Gawn visited their 2021 premiership teammate at home the day after his collision with Maynard.
“He’s in pretty good spirits but he is sore, which I suppose anyone would be when you get concussed,” Petracca said.
Petracca did not want to comment on whether Demons players had an issue with Maynard over his role in the Brayshaw collision.
Maynard also visited Brayshaw over the weekend to check in on his former junior football teammate.
“The only thing we were concerned about is our teammate, and Gus on the ground,” Petracca said.
“It’s difficult to see anyone on the ground with concussion.”
Maynard faces the prospect of missing the rest of Collingwood’s premiership push through suspension.
The Magpies secured a home preliminary final with their win over Melbourne in last Thursday’s qualifying final, and will meet the winner of the Port Adelaide v Greater Western Sydney semifinal.
Source: AFL NEWS ABC