JETS defender Larissa Crummer says she will not rush her recovery this time after aggravating a thigh strain against Melbourne Victory and missing Australia’s two-game series against Chile.
Crummer was withdrawn from the Matildas squad and Newcastle teammate Gema Simon replaced her on Monday. Australia play Chile at Penrith on Saturday and at Newcastle on Tuesday.
Jets coach Craig Deans, though, has not given up hope of Crummer playing in the club’s first home game of the W-League season against Canberra at No.2 Sportsground on November 17.
The defender was injured in Australia’s 1-1 away draw with England a month ago but recovered to feature in the Jets’ 2-1 loss to Victory last Thursday night. The 22-year-old, debuting for Newcastle, got through the game but was limping late.
“I’m pretty disappointed,” Crummer said of missing the Matildas matches.
“I’ve had this injury for a little bit and I’m just trying to manage it. I played obviously against Victory and I’ve made it a little bit worse. It's disappointing I’m no longer there but I’ve just got to get this leg right.
“I’ve had broken bones and been able to play through that but with this I just really struggled and I was in quite a bit of pain towards the end of that game, but I’m just happy I got the 90 minutes out and I can rest now and let it heal.
“If I can get back by this home game, then hopefully, but I’m not going to rush it this time.”
Crummer was under pressure late as Victory regularly counter-attacked while Newcastle pushed numbers forward in search of an equaliser.
“We were down and I didn't want to upset the squad anymore by changing and shuffling so I just tried to push on and do what I could for the team,” she said. “It didn’t help, but I’m happy to put myself in those positions for the team.”
Deans was leaning towards resting Crummer for the Canberra game.
“I think it would be risky to play her in the next game,” Deans said. “We hoped she’d get through the game last week. If we had a crystal ball and knew she’d be missing two or three weeks, then you wouldn’t play her, but that didn’t seem the case.
“We’ll probably be a bit more cautious with it this time and make sure it’s the best thing for her.
“You can only be guided by the players and I love the fact that she wanted to stay out there and finish the game. That’s the mentality you want from your players.”
Although disappointed for Crummer, he was pleased to see Simon return to the national team after a knee injury marred her 2017-18 season. Simon, who has seven Matildas caps, had clean-up surgery in the off-season and was strong against Victory.
“She probably had a disappointing year again last year, mainly due to injury, and trying to battle on when maybe it was better to bite the bullet and get it sorted out,” he said.
“But she did that over the off-season and she’s trained well pre-season. She’s still working her way back to what would be full fitness for her, but down in Melbourne she played well.”
“She got forward, she attacked and defensively she did the job quite well as well.
“It’s nice that people who have some form are getting rewarded with the national team and hopefully she’ll get some game time as well.”