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Melbourne will be without two of it’s AFL Women’s players for the rest of the season, with defenders Meg Downie and Stephanie De Bortoli succumbing to injury.

Downie was knocked out in the fourth quarter of the Demon’s win over Collingwood on Saturday night. However, Women’s football operations manager Debbie Lee said Downie ruptured her hamstring just prior to that incident.

“When Meg was regaining consciousness, she actually mentioned to the medical team that her hamstring was injured,” she said.

“The medical team thought she was still concussed when talking about it, but Meg was quite right.

“We got an MRI scan on Monday and unfortunately the results weren’t what we were hoping.”

Downie was signed by Melbourne as a free agent for this season, she has impressed in the back line in the opening games. She will be joined on the sidelines by Sephanie De Bortoli, who is still recovering from an Achilles injury.

“Steph had surgery last week and is now recovering from her Achilles injury. She’s recovering well at home and will be rested for two weeks and she’s out for the season as well, which is really disappointing,” she said.

“Both girls are both positive around their experience with the Melbourne Football Club and they’re both equally positive about what they can add, as they’re very much part of the team still.”

“It’s really unfortunate. When you’re playing elite football and pushing your body, unfortunately these injuries can occur. We’re fully supporting both athletes in their recovery and they’re still a big part of the team.”

Lee said Melbourne could activate the top-up player rule once its list was below 24 fit players.

“If we’ve got 24 healthy athletes, we can’t activate the top-up regulation, so we’ll monitor that. We’ll look at how healthy our list is and if we need to activate it, we will,” she said.