MERRIVALE big man Rhys Raymond could miss the next fortnight of football after suffering whiplash during the Tigers’ defeat to Allansford.
Coach Karl Dwyer yesterday confirmed the extent of the injury, which Raymond suffered about five minutes into the season opener at Allansford on Sunday.
The injury forced Merrivale to sub the ruckman out of the match, becoming the first club to use the new Warrnambool and District league rule in the process.
Dwyer said Raymond suffered the whiplash — and mild concussion — when an Allansford player tackled him while he was over the football.
“There’s no structural damage, he got pretty bad whiplash though. It’s looking likely he’ll miss this week and maybe another one as well,” he said.
“The X-ray and MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) scan all came up well, but he hasn’t got much movement in his neck.”
Merrivale plays its first home match for the season on Saturday, against a South Rovers side which lost to Kolora-Noorat by 47 points in round one.
In other matches, Russells Creek and Nirranda will chase their first win at Mack Oval.
East Warrnambool will meet Deakin University at Reid Oval.
Timboon Demons welcomes Dennington to Timboon, and the resurgent Old Collegians will host Kolora-Noorat at Davidson Oval.
The match of the round is at Panmure, where reigning premiers Panmure will welcome Allansford.
The Cats are one of only two sides to win at the Panmure ground since the 2012 season.