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2013 Review: Matt Suckling

Matt Suckling 2013 highlights Watch highlights of Matt Suckling for 2013

Matt Suckling’s season was over before it had even begun in 2013, after the left footer ruptured his anterior cruciate ligament against Richmond in week three of the NAB Cup.

When trying to change direction on the wing of Aurora Stadium in Tasmania, Suckling lost his footing before falling to the ground in pain and clutching his knee.

He was immediately helped from the field by Club doctors and taken into the change rooms to be assessed before it became clear he had done serious damage.

The loss of the raking left-footer was a huge blow to the Hawks after the then 24 year old had come off a career-best season in 2012 and looked ready to again wreak havoc in 2013.

It was hoped Suckling would again take his game to a new level after playing 25 of a possible 25 matches last year and averaged 20 disposals.

A damaging half back flanker when in full flight, the Hawks will look forward to Suckling’s return in 2014 and view him almost as a new recruit.

At his best, the now 25 year old will add valuable run off half back with fellow half back Grant Birchall plus the likes of Ben Stratton and Josh Gibson who added more attacking flair in their teammates’ absence this season.

If it’s possible, the Hawthorn half backline will be even more difficult to penetrate next season with the inclusion of Suckling, not to mention the power of its half backline will be amplified by his return.

He began running duties midway through the season and is hopeful of completing most of the pre-season ahead of 2014 to make his comeback early in the season.

Suckling has spent a lot of time in the gym working on strengthening himself in other areas for his return.

A study tour of rehabilitation centres plus some spare time in Europe mid-year will have helped freshen his mind for his assault on 2014.

One luxury the Hawks have though is there is no need to rush his return date and instead will ensure he is 100 per cent ready to return before pulling the trigger.

What Chris Fagan said: Unfortunately we lost Matt during the pre-season with a knee reconstruction but he’s progressing really well and will be like a recruit for us in 2014. We’re really looking forward to having him back early in the season.

Suckling in the news in 2013
The long road: Suckling re-signs

Suckling, Woodward take rehab overseas

Upbeat Suckling overwhelmed by support

Videos featuring Suckling in 2013
Suckling re-signs

Suckling's optimism

HawkTalk Episode 21