Up to six Richmond regulars could make their returns from injury in Sunday’s pivotal contest against St Kilda at Marvel Stadium.
Injuries to a spate of experienced senior players have seen the Tigers use 37 players so far in 2019, tied with St Kilda and Melbourne for most in the AFL.
The injury crisis has allowed young Tigers such as half-back Sydney Stack, father-son recruit Patrick Naish and exciting utility Noah Balta gain invaluable experience, but has cost the club in terms of results, with three straight losses causing Richmond to slide out of the top eight after round 14.
Barring any setbacks in training during the week, captain Trent Cotchin will be in the frame to return from a hamstring complaint, as will key defender David Astbury and stand-in skipper Shane Edwards. Underrated midfielder Kane Lambert, ruckman Ivan Soldo and running defender Jayden Short are also believed to be nearing full fitness.
Tigers football boss Neil Balme said all six players would be a chance to return this weekend.
“They’re all in some sort of contention,” Balme told The Age.
The Tigers had the bye in round 14 after a 33-point loss at the hands of the Crows in round 13.