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Demons lose two to ACL injuries

‘‘Unfortunately 2020 will look a bit different for me as I come back from an ACL and a partially torn MCL,’’ Smith said. ‘‘No doubt there will be challenging and difficult times ahead but I look forward to tackling them head on.’’

Melbourne’s AFLW football manager Daniel McPherson said the players were shattered for Sloane and Smith.

‘‘It’s obviously a devastating outcome for Shae and Katherine, who are both integral members of our team,’’ said McPherson.

‘‘They are both terrific characters, and we know their resilience and determination will ensure they push each other through their recovery and rehab to come back even stronger.’’

There were nine ACL injuries suffered by players across the competition’s 10 clubs last year. Four clubs, West Coast, Gold Coast, St Kilda and Richmond, have been added into the league this season. The competition’s best player, dual Adelaide premiership captain Erin Phillips, tore her ACL in last year’s grand final win against Carlton. But she’s hoping to be ready to play in the Crows’ round one game against Brisbane.

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