MELBOURNE forward Jake Melksham has ended the pre-Christmas training block in the rehabilitation group after suffering hamstring soreness.
But the 27-year-old, who was already on a modified program after post-season ankle surgery, is confident he will benefit from the conservative approach in the long run.
“I’ll be totally fine (for round one). If we were training next week I’d be in with the main group so we’re just playing it safe before Christmas,” Melksham told reporters on Friday.
“I just had a bit of hamstring tightness the other week. I actually injured that same hamstring during the year so they’re just being a bit cautious at the minute.”
Melksham missed two games through injury late in the season but returned to play an important part in the club’s finals run that ended in a 66-point preliminary final loss to eventual premiers West Coast.
Other key Demons who have been on modified programs to some extent include Jake Lever (knee), Jack Viney (foot), Christian Petracca (knee), Clayton Oliver (shoulders) and Neville Jetta (shoulder).
Lever’s rehabilitation from a knee reconstruction suffered a setback recently when he underwent a minor procedure to remove scar tissue.
“He’s going all right. I’m working with him in rehab, he’s ticking off a fair bit of volume at the moment in terms of his running,” Melksham reported.
“I think it’s just a day-to-day thing with him with how it’s feeling and they work around that. He’s going well.”
Melbourne held their final training session for 2018 at Gosch’s Paddock on Friday before the mandatory three-week Christmas break.
The players will complete individual programs away from the club and return on January 14.
© AAP 2018