Sydney coach John Longmire will ask Harry Cunningham and Jake Lloyd to step into the gap left by star AFL midfielder Dan Hannebery.
Scans on Monday revealed the All-Australian had damaged the ligaments in front of his right ankle during Saturday afternoon’s four-point win over Port Adelaide, ruling him out for up to a month.
“He’s a got a slight syndesmosis injury in his ankle, which means he’ll probably miss about four weeks,” Longmire said.
“It could be either side of that though, so it could be a shorter time frame than that, or at worst it could be a little bit longer.”
While the injury won’t require surgery, Longmire said Hannebery’s ligaments would need to fully heal before he could return to the field.
“He’ll be non-weight bearing for the next 10 days and hopefully it’s OK after that,” he added.
“We have to wait and see, but at the moment it’s four weeks.”
That would mean Hannebery misses matches against Richmond, GWS, West Coast and Carlton before returning in time for the club’s blockbuster with Hawthorn on July 26.
Longmire said after a quiet start to the season, Hannebery had been one of the club’s key weapons.
“He’s out now, and we’re fortunate we’ve been blooding some extra midfielders through that area,” he said.
“Cunningham and Lloyd and players like that… they just get more responsibility.
Second-year Cunningham and rookie Lloyd have impressed without being prolific ball-winners for the Swans.
Lloyd is yet to play in a losing side for the Swans after making his debut at the beginning of their eight-game winning streak against Fremantle.
Their first opportunity to impress Longmire will come on Friday night against the Tigers.
Despite their lacklustre form, Longmire said he wasn’t taking four points for granted against the 15th-placed side.
“Things can change pretty quickly in AFL football… their best footy is a pretty good brand of footy,” he said.