Hawthorn ruckman Ben McEvoy is set to make a surprise return to the side ahead of its clash with Essendon on Friday night.

McEvoy was expected to miss another week with an ankle injury but has proved his fitness ahead of an all-important match-up with the Bombers.

Kaiden Brand and Dylan Moore will also make their fourth and fifth appearances of the season respectively as they round out the three inclusions ahead of Round 13.

GM – Football Graham Wright said McEvoy’s return was a huge boost to the side.

“Before getting injured in Round 9, Ben was one of our most in-form players,” Wright said.

“We’re very excited to have him back in the team.

“His ability to give our midfielders first-use as well as his aerial presence will be important for us.”

Read: Key match-ups

Chad Wingard will miss this week with a hamstring injury, while young pair Marc Pittonet and Mitch Lewis have been left out of the side that lost to Brisbane.

Essendon v Hawthorn
Friday 14th June, 7.50pm
Marvel Stadium

B:  Tim O'Brien, James Frawley, Shaun Burgoyne 
HB:  Ben Stratton, James Sicily, Blake Hardwick
C:  Tom Scully, Liam Shiels, Ricky Henderson
HF:  Luke Breust, Jack Gunston, Paul Puopolo 
F: Dylan Moore, Ben McEvoy, Jarman Impey
R: Jonathon Ceglar, James Worpel, Jaeger O’Meara
INT: Conor Glass, James Cousins, Isaac Smith, Kaiden Brand

In: McEvoy, Moore, Brand
Out: Wingard (injured), Pittonet (omitted), Lewis (omitted)