MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JUNE 30: Jade Gresham of the Saints handballs whilst being tackled by Trent Cotchin of the Tigers during the round 15 AFL match between the St Kilda Saints and the Richmond Tigers at Marvel Stadium on June 30, 2019 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)

Emerging St Kilda star Jade Gresham could miss the rest of the AFL season.

Scans have revealed signs of stress fractures in the 22-year old’s lower back, according to AFL Media’s Mitch Cleary.

He will miss the rest of the home and away season and likely be reassessed after around six weeks.

It is a major blow for Saints, who currently sit fifth on the ladder at 7-4.

“Jade reported soreness in his back following Monday night’s game against Geelong, with scans unfortunately showing signs of a stress fracture,” Saints chief operating officer Simon Lethlean told the club’s website.

“It is disappointing for the club and for Jade personally, but the best course of action is an extended period of rest.”

He joins fellow midfielders Dan Hannebery (hamstring), Seb Ross (calf) and Luke Dunstan (pectoral muscle) on the sidelines.

Gresham was enjoying arguably his best ever season spending more time on the ball, averaging 17.6 disposals and 4.7 clearances from 11 games.

“He has been developing well this season as a more permanent midfielder and now that responsibility will fall to others to fill the void,” Lethlean said.

“Thankfully, the injury has been discovered relatively early but until a period of rest is completed and scans are re-done in six or so weeks, then we will need to treat it conservatively.

“We will work with Jade in the coming days to determine whether he remains with the team or returns home to Melbourne to complete his recovery.”