Port Adelaide select Dougal Howard for first AFL game in more than 13 months

BACK ON TRACK: Wagga's Dougal Howard when he was back home in October last year. He will return to Port Adelaide's AFL team on Sunday.
BACK ON TRACK: Wagga's Dougal Howard when he was back home in October last year. He will return to Port Adelaide's AFL team on Sunday.

WAGGA footballer Dougal Howard will play his first AFL game in more than 13 months when he returns to Port Adelaide’s team on Sunday.

Howard has been named at centre-half-forward against Collingwood at Adelaide Oval on Sunday.

Howard tore the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee in just his sixth AFL game, against Fremantle in June last year.

The 21-year-old made his return to the field in April and has shone at South Australian National Football League (SANFL) level.

Port Adelaide coach Ken Hinkley is looking forward to Howard’s return.

“He’s ready,” Hinkley said.

“We’ve been really cautious with Dougal after doing the knee last year.

“He’s got some real power that we like, and he’s got some speed at the top end. He’s a good size. He marks the ball and kicks the ball really well and he can play both ends, and he can play in the ruck.”