Three-time Hawthorn premiership player Terry Wallace says the absence of the injured Tom Mitchell could make life harder for fellow midfielder Jaeger O'Meara.
Mitchell went down with a broken leg at training on Friday morning and is likely to miss the entire 2019 season in what is a hammer blow for the Hawks’ finals chances.
O'Meara is likely to face greater attention from opposition clubs, given he is seen as the club’s next best on-baller behind the reigning Brownlow Medallist, according to Wallace.
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“He’ll be under more pressure because he will get the lock down player from the opposition side,” Wallace told SEN Drive.
“We debated so many times about whether to tag Mitchell or not tag Mitchell and what difference did it make?
“By the time we got to the back-half of the year there were more sides that were trying to run with him - I think that goes to Jaeger O'Meara which makes his role even harder.
“When you lose one it actually impacts others in your side. I think he’ll get more specialised attention this season after Mitchell’s gone down.”
O'Meara had his best season in Hawks colours in 2018, averaging 24 disposals and 5.4 tackles per game.