Western Bulldogs selectors breathed a collective sigh of relief on Saturday afternoon after rebounding duo Taylor Duryea and Ed Richards were cleared of any serious injury following separate clashes during the Dogs' 58-point rout of the Kangaroos at Princes Park.
Both defenders were removed from the inconsequential contest before the quarter-time break, with Richards hampered by a quad injury and Duryea captured on camera wearing a neck brace in the change rooms.
After being caught in what is commonly described as a 'crusher tackle' in rugby league parlance, Duryea was sent for scans on his neck, however, as revealed by Bulldogs' backline coach Rohan Smith, the former Hawk has been given the green light to keep his sights on Round 1.
"He's got a little knock to the neck," Smith said of Duryea. "All the scans have cleared him of any injury. He feels okay, which is a real positive for us.
"We'll see how he recovers. We'll talk to the doctors as we get inside, but the scans are all clear, which is the most important part. He's just going to have a little bit of a rest now. He'll probably introduce himself through training this week and hopefully be right for Round 1.
"Anytime a player goes down with injury, once they get their scans done and they're all clear, it's just a load off your mind."
Smith's air of positivity remained when quizzed about Richards' fitness, with the club legend even cracking wise about the redhead's level of fortitude.
"It's just a corky," Smith said with a smile when speaking on Richards.
"I was giving him a little bit down there (on the bench) after coming off with just a corky, but it was a big one. He'll be right. He'll ice up and he'll be sweet."
The pair of positive diagnoses added to the excitement of the afternoon, with the Bulldogs seeing the benefits of their off-season exertion as twinned talls Rory Lobb and returning defender Liam Jones made their mark across all thirds of the ground.
Luke Beveridge's outfit will continue ramping up preparations across the next fortnight before their Round 1 date against the Demons at the MCG on Saturday, March 18.