Adelaide youngster Riley Knight is unlikely to play in the Crows’ season opener against Essendon at Etihad Stadium on March 23 after undergoing ankle surgery on Tuesday.
The 22-year-old forward had the fat pad on his heel operated on as it was causing him some irritation.
Knight is expected to be sidelined for six weeks, meaning he probably won’t be available for senior selection until round two at least.
“Unfortunately Riley started to feel some soreness in his ankle and it was decided that surgery was the best course of action,” Adelaide high performance manager Matt Hass said.
“He will be off legs while he recovers post-operation and we will look to build him back up to full fitness in around six weeks.
“He will not play any part in pre-season matches and we hope he will be available for selection in the early part of the AFL season.”
Knight had a breakout 2017 season, playing 19 of his 31 career games, including the grand final loss to Richmond. He averaged 15 disposals a game and booted 13 goals.