Hawks star set to miss two months, but does not require surgery. His four goals and presence around the ground inspired Hawthorn to a thrilling three-point win against North Melbourne, but the Hawks will have to again get used to life with him.
Cyril Rioli will miss the next eight weeks after scans confirmed he suffered a high grade hamstring tear mid-way through the last term at the MCG.
The 23-year-old consulted surgeons who suggested he does not need an operation, despite his history of hamstring tears of varying varying degrees.
In 2011 he was forced to sit on the sidelines for two separate five match stretches, while two seasons previously, he missed three games with the same injury.
Hawthorn coach Alastair Clarkson said Rioli’s sheer class probably got his side over the line in a game they did not deserve to win given the standard of play.
“We’re lucky we had him in the first three and a bit quarters because we would have been in a bit of trouble without him,” Clarkson said.
“That’s obviously happened before, he’s a pretty special talent. We needed some special things to occur today to just get us a goal when we really needed it and he did that on four occasions.”
Hawthorn will play a side in round six with its own injury headaches in the form of the Adelaide Crows, after they lost key forward Taylor Walker for the rest of the season after rupturing his ACL.