Dustin Martin will NOT make his AFL comeback against West Coast Eagles as Richmond chief confirms star man won’t fly out to Perth with Tigers fans desperate for hero’s return after taking indefinite leave following father’s death
- Dustin Martin will not make his AFL comeback against the Eagles this weekend
- The 30-year-old returned to training for the first time since his indefinite leave
- Martin looked in good shape, sparking hopes of an immediate return in Perth
- But Tigers general manager says he won’t travel west for the game on Friday
Richmond fans will have to wait a little while longer for Dustin Martin’s AFL return, with the Tigers hero ruled out of their trip to Perth on Friday night.
Martin, 30, has been absent since Round 1 with the three-time Premiership winner taking indefinite leave to cope with the death of his father Shane, who died of a suspected heart attack in December.
The midfielder was spotted back at Punt Road on Saturday and looked in good shape as he trained with team-mates on Tuesday, stirring excitement among fans that he may make an immediate return this weekend.
Dustin Martin will not make his AFL comeback this weekend, Richmond have confirmed
However, Tigers General Manager Tim Livingstone has poured cold water on the possibility of Martin stepping out for Damien Hardwick’s side in Perth, with the club cautious not to rush him back too soon.
‘It is great to see Dustin back at training,’ Livingstone said via the club’s official website.
‘The boys are excited to have him back. He has got a couple of good football sessions in this week and is looking fit and strong.
The 30-year-old returned to training this week for the first time since taking indefinite leave
However, the Tigers feel it is too soon to rush Martin back into Damien Hardwick’s (above) side
‘It has been a five-week break- so that is not the best preparation coming into this round (for Dustin).
‘We will have a look again next week and see how he is progressing.’
Richmond veterans Trent Cotchin and Robbie Tarrant will also miss the Eagles game, with Livingstone adding that the quick turnaround from Sunday’s defeat by Melbourne is not ideal for the ageing pair.
‘The five-day break for those older guys and the travel is not the best preparation both for this game (against West Coast) and the following v Collingwood,’ he explained.