Melbourne captain Max Gawn is expected to play in Sunday's clash with Fremantle, but the Demons will weigh up potentially giving the 32-year-old some rest in "the back end of the year" as they continue to monitor his fitness.

Gawn was tested by the club's high-performance team ahead of last Sunday's win over St Kilda and managed to prove his fitness despite a niggling corky to his calf.

The six-time All-Australian didn't seem impacted in the slightest once the game was underway, with Gawn putting together one of his finest performances against Saints star Rowan Marshall - amassing 27 disposals, 34 hitouts, 18 contested possessions, 10 clearances and a goal in the comfortable win.

The Demons veteran has pulled up well from Round 11 and is set to fly to Alice Springs for this weekend's bout with the Dockers, with Gawn training fully at Casey Fields at the club's main session.

Gawn has dealt with the calf issue for some time, and Melbourne continues to monitor their premiership captain weekly.

While Gawn doesn't need a break anytime soon, coach Simon Goodwin confirmed to media on Thursday that the Demons ruckman could be afforded a spell on the sidelines later into the season.

"He pulled up really well. It was a corky he's been dealing with and it seems to be getting better day by day," Goodwin said.

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - MARCH 23: Max Gawn of the Demons lead the team off the ground after the round two AFL match between Hawthorn Hawks and Melbourne Demons at Melbourne Cricket Ground, on March 23, 2024, in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Darrian Traynor/Getty Images)

"We monitored him closely post-game. He'll train fully today and be available to play. The way he played last week was unbelievable, he's a great leader of our footy club.

"We'd never take a risk with Max. He carries corks most weeks, as do a lot of rucks. It's a more combative spot.

"We certainly monitor Max and know how important he is to our team. At this stage he's fully fit, ready to go and playing some amazing footy. It's more something we'll look at in the back end of the year.

"Tom Fullarton missed last week with a minor hamstring (injury), he'll be available this week. We have got some options to bring into the team in that space.

Gawn is set to face his former prodigy Luke Jackson and fellow Dockers big man Sean Darcy at Traeger Park this weekend in what will be an enticing battle in the middle of the field.

The duo are arguably the most lethal ruck combination in the game, while Gawn has one hand on his seventh All-Australian blazer following a sensational opening half to his 2024 campaign.

It's a matchup that has Goodwin excited, knowing his skipper will rise to the occasion as the Demons to hold onto their top-four placing.

"He's pretty keen. Max is someone who does a lot of work on his opposition and he knows the quality that's he's coming up against," Goodwin added.

"They're different types of ruckmen, Darcy and Jackson. He knows Luke incredibly well and Sean is a great tap ruckman.

Embed from Getty Images

"He'll be up for the challenge. He'll do a lot of work in that space around what he needs to be good at, he'll try and get an advantage where he can.

"The more responsibility you give to Max... generally he rises to the occasion. We'll be looking forward to that."

The Demons are will monitor swingman Harrison Petty ahead of the weekend as he deals with an ankle injury, while Tom Fullarton (hamstring) and Daniel Turner (calf) are both in the frame following recent setbacks.

Melbourne host Fremantle in Alice Springs on Sunday at 1:00pm (AEST).

 2024-06-02T03:00:00Z 
Fremantle WON BY 92 POINTS
TIO Traeger Park
MELB   
49
FT
141
   FRE