Fremantle’s star defender Alex Pearce to return to the training track after latest injury setback

Headshot of Catherine Healey
Catherine HealeyThe West Australian
Email Catherine Healey
Luckless Fremantle defender Alex Pearce will hit the training track this week.
Camera IconLuckless Fremantle defender Alex Pearce will hit the training track this week. Credit: Fremantle FC

Luckless Fremantle defender Alex Pearce has taken a big step towards a return for the Dockers this season.

After suffering another shocking leg injury, this time to the MCL in his knee in round one against Melbourne, Pearce had good news for fans on Wednesday.

“I’m going to start running later this week,” he told 10 News First.

“I’m going to start really getting to work.

“I haven’t had three weeks of grinding and trying to just get through, I’ve had a few weeks of struggles, disappointments but I’m somewhat refreshed now to really have a crack.”

Pearce has played just 12 games since the start of 2019 due to persistent leg injuries and has just 54 AFL games to his name after debuting in 2013.

The defender’s bad luck started back in 2016 when he broke his leg at Domain Stadium.

Scans the following year confirmed Pearce suffered a partial fracture to the same leg, forcing him to sit out the entire 2017 season.

The defender then suffered a season-ending ankle injury against Collingwood at the MCG in June 2019.

That injury, which required follow up surgery, ensured he missed the entire 2020 campaign as well.

Describing the rehabilitation group as “boring, lonely and hard”, Pearce admits the latest injury took a toll.

“Sport becomes so much a part of our life and our identity,” he said.

“People know me as a footballer.

“When that gets taken away or when you think that might get taken away, you really struggle.”

Pearce was clearly emotional in the Fremantle rooms after his latest injury setback.

But the star defender saw the lighter side of the moment on Wednesday.

“I’m glad the cameras weren’t in there half an hour earlier. I would have been a lot more emotional,” he revealed.

Pearce is expected to remain sidelined for another three to four weeks.

Get the latest news from thewest.com.au in your inbox.

Sign up for our emails