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Eagles rested Reid after internal testing showed scary reality of injuries

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Eagles rested Reid after internal testing showed scary reality of injuries

Harley Reid’s Western derby heroics have become even more incredible after it was revealed he put on the winning display while his body was “sagging”.

Reid, who has made an impressive start to his AFL career, will take a well-deserved break when West Coast take on the Suns on the Gold Coast on Sunday.

Last year’s No. 1 draft pick made a splash with three goals, 19 possessions and seven clearances in West Coast’s stunning 37-point win over Fremantle last week.

His two-goal burst late in the first quarter helped shift West Coast’s momentum.

A week earlier, Reid had 27 disposals, seven clearances and a goal in a 39-point win over Richmond.

Surprisingly, those two performances came after West Coast’s internal measurements revealed that his body was showing some signs of needing a break.

“I think he really wanted to play (against Gold Coast), but he also understood the situation,” West Coast coach Adam Simpson said on Friday.

“He was just going a little bit weak with his body.

“With the metrics that we measure our players by every week, it has slowly decreased over the last few weeks.

“We have made a decision looking at the broader picture.

“We’re going to miss him… but doing what’s right for the child is also our priority.”

Reid has been given time to visit his family in the Victorian town of Tongala.

West Coast will also be without suspended defender Tom Barrass when they face Gold Coast, robbing the Eagles of two of their most important players.

But in a big boost, premiership forward Liam Ryan returns for the first time since rupturing his hamstring against Fremantle in round three last year.

Ryan replaces injured forward Noah Long (hip), while the Eagles also welcome back defender Harry Edwards and midfielder Luke Edwards.

“I think he’s nervous. It’s been a while,” Simpson said of Ryan.

“We’ll handle him during the game…we’ll take care of him with some minutes.”

West Coast challenged Barrass’ one-match suspension at the AFL Tribunal for a sling tackle, hoping the defender’s good record would help reduce the suspension to a fine.

But unlike what happened to Brisbane’s Charlie Cameron a week earlier, the AFL Tribunal found there were no exceptional or compelling circumstances.

As for the tackle itself, Simpson said his players had to be careful not to repeat those actions.

“We just have to be careful about those incidents. We can avoid them,” Simpson said.

“It was a 50-50 decision, I thought in terms of missing a week (due to suspension).

“The action itself is pretty clear. We just have to be careful.”

Gold Coast included veteran forward Sam Day and defender Rory Atkins in their 23-man squad in place of Ethan Read (led) and Bodhi Uwland (removed).

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