Hawthorn defender Changkuoth Jiath has suffered a fresh setback in his bid to return from injury, with the dashing Hawk unable to play over the weekend due to a quad issue.

Jiath has missed the opening six games of the season due to a serious hamstring injury sustained in the pre-season, with the 24-year-old's extensive recovery process seen to be nearing an end over the past week.

The Hawks' half-back was set to feature for Box Hill in the VFL on Saturday against North Melbourne but was pulled from the side as a late omission, with senior coach Sam Mitchell confirming Jiath suffered a quad injury prior to his comeback game, per The Age. 

Soft-tissue injuries brought Jiath's 2023 season to an abrupt end last May, with the Morwell junior sent to Qatar over the summer to visit a world-renowned specialist in the hope of setting himself up for the year ahead.

The extent of Jiath's latest setback is not yet known.

The Hawks managed their first win of the AFL season on Sunday against the Kangaroos, with players across all three lines of the field returning to form following a dismal Round 5 outing against the Gold Coast Suns.

One outcome from that loss was the omission of former top ten draft selection Josh Ward, who was sent back to the VFL to regain form at the state league level.

Ward collected 27 disposals and two goals for Box Hill in a 60-point victory, with Mitchell signing the 20-year-old's praises following the game against North Melbourne's senior side.

"I thought Wardy was fantastic in the VFL yesterday," Mitchell said.

"He had some challenges in front of him. He's an enormously disciplined young fella who's going to bounce back really quickly.

"I've said this to him... [the omission] doesn't dint anything about the future he is going to have at this club. He's going to be a great player for us."

With Ward to return to the selection frame, the Hawks could also regain Will Day and Mitch Lewis from injury for their Round 7 bout with Sydney.

Hawthorn WON BY 45 POINTS
Marvel Stadium