SAM HAYES will make his AFL debut against Carlton on Sunday after fellow ruckman Scott Lycett was unable to pass a fitness test on his dislocated right shoulder.
Lycett suffered the injury against Melbourne last week and was given an opportunity to rest it before being put through his paces ahead of Sunday’s clash with Carlton.
Head of Medical Services, Tim O’Leary says Lycett will require surgery to repair the shoulder, the timing of which will be confirmed in coming days.
“We gave Scott every chance to get up and he really tested his shoulder at training today, but unfortunately he was unable to get through,” O’Leary said.
“We have decided the best course of action will be to have the shoulder repaired, which will unfortunately see him miss around three months of football.”
Lycett’s injury opens the door for the club’s 2021 SANFL best and fairest Sam Hayes to play his first game at AFL level.
The 22-year-old came to Port Adelaide with pick 47 in the 2017 AFL National Draft after being a dual under 18 All-Australian.
The 205cm ruckman played just 18 SANFL games in his first three seasons after suffering an ACL rupture in his first season and enduring the club’s absence from the competition in 2020 following the COVID-19 outbreak.
In the opening two rounds of the 2022 SANFL season Hayes has averaged 29 hit-outs and 14 disposals per game.