Jack Higgins steps up his training at the Tigers’ pre-season camp in Southport.
Jack Higgins steps up his training at the Tigers’ pre-season camp in Southport.

Higgins’ recovery ahead of schedule

Richmond hard nut Jack Higgins is in the frame to play in at least one of the Tigers' pre-season games as he makes a remarkable early comeback from dual brain surgeries.

Despite fears he may never walk or play football again, Higgins has made an excellent recovery and is a genuine chance to play in the Tigers' blockbuster season-opener against Carlton.

 

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Initially Higgins, 20, was told would not be able to play until the second half of the 2020 season but his rapid progress over summer has brought forward his timeline by months.

Higgins was a solid performer in Richmond's 35-minute practice session at Punt Rd on Thursday and is now in line to play in one of the club's two Marsh Community Series games next month.

 

Jack Higgins steps up his training at the Tigers’ pre-season camp in Southport.
Jack Higgins steps up his training at the Tigers’ pre-season camp in Southport.

 

The Tigers tackle Collingwood on March 1 and Greater Western Sydney on March 8.

Higgins will need medical clearance before being allowed to play, but the Tigers are becoming increasingly confident he will be available to play senior football in the early part of the AFL season.

Higgins has made rapid progress after the troubling news he would need a secondary brain procedure late last year because of some bleeding on the brain.

He first reported some headaches and blurred vision in a VFL game in July but the first operation failed to fix all of the issues.

A smiling Jack Higgins enjoys being back on the training track with his teammates.
A smiling Jack Higgins enjoys being back on the training track with his teammates.

The secondary procedure was more invasive and Higgins was told he may need six months off before he returns to training.

The positive news is a major coup for the Tigers after losing champion defender Alex Rance to retirement late last year.

Higgins has played 33 games and has been training with the midfield and forward groups ahead of the 2020 season.

The dangerous goal kicker is likely to push further up the ground this year.



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