Northern Bombers key defender Jay Foon is optimistically doubtful of his chances of running out with his best mates on Saturday.
The 23-year-old was almost resigned to the fact at training on Thursday night that he would miss his second grand final in five seasons through injury.
Foon, who fractured C5 and damaged neck ligaments in July, has been named as an emergency for the State League decider but said he was more than likely going to be watching from the stands.
“It’s disappointing having missed out on [the 2014 grand final victory] as well with a broken leg – it’s not a great thing but life goes on,” he said.
“I got rid of the neck brace Monday week ago, so I’ve had it off for about nine days which feels good. The six weeks wearing it and recovery was pretty tough coming to watch the boys and not being able to play, but overall it wasn’t too bad.
“It was something that I had to do, so you just do it.”
Broken bones are not a foreign thing for the electrician, who also fractured his arm during the 2015 pre-season.
He was able to play in the 2015 and 2017 flags but that doesn’t hide his emotions on missing out on another.
I’ve learnt that footy isn’t everything.Jay Foon
But typical of the culture North Launceston has built, the classy operator was focused on encouraging and supporting his teammates through their final run before another-history making chapter.
“I’ve had a fair few injuries over my time and I’ve learnt that footy isn’t everything,” Foon said.
“There is more to life than playing football and injuries happen.”
During his lengthy lay off Foon has put his knowledge to good use in the coaches’ box, chipping in when he sees fit.
“I’ve just been spectating really and sitting up in the coaches’ box helping out with the back line where I can, but pretty much watching from afar,” he said.
And on Saturday: “I’m not a very good viewer, and I won’t be on this weekend”.