Golden Square rookie Callum Draper is recovering in hospital after having his spleen removed on Saturday night.
The teenager was helped from the ground after copping a heavy knock in Saturday’s win over Sandhurst at the QEO.
At first it didn’t appear Draper’s injury was serious, but by late on Saturday night he was being operated on to have his spleen removed.
“The operation went as well as that kind of operation can go,’’ Golden Square coach Bernie Haberman said.
“Where that leaves Callum with his footy going forward… I’m not sure. All we want is for him to get better.”
Draper had made a good impression in his first season of senior footy with the Bulldogs.
The 19-year-old has spent most of his 11 games on the wing or across half-back.
“He’s been a really good contributor for us,’’ Haberman said of Draper.
“He’s an intelligent player and he’s been able to grasp the way we want to play footy.
“We don’t have a lot of depth, so losing someone who knows how we want to play does hurt us.”
Square’s 27-point win over the Dragons come at a cost.
On top of Draper’s serious injury, star defender Clayton Anderson suffered a shoulder injury and he’s already been ruled out of this week’s BFNL blockbuster clash against Eaglehawk.
“Not sure yet how many weeks Clayton will miss, but he’ll be out this week,’’ Haberman said.
“Our depth will be tested, but we have had Jack Geary, Brayden Dorrington and Travis Baird out at the same time this year and we coped okay.
“We’ve played two, three or four under-18 players each week and we’ll continue to do that.
“We got Dorrington and Dylan Johnstone back last week after they’d missed a few weeks and they’ll improve off that.”
The Bulldogs sit on top of the BFNL ladder with a 10-2 record.
Eaglehawk has the same win-loss ratio, but is 13.57 per cent behind the Bulldogs on percentage.
The Dogs and Hawks are one-game clear of third-placed Strathfieldsaye.