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Cherries: Hughes could be out for six weeks
Cherries star Richard Hughes is set for an extended spell on the sidelines after being struck down by a hamstring injury.
Hughes damaged the muscle during Cherries’ 2-0 win over Leyton Orient on Saturday and is likely to be out for between four to six weeks.
A scan revealed the midfielder had suffered a strain to his right hamstring, although the findings were not as serious as had first been feared.
Hughes limped off towards the end of the first half against Orient and there were concerns he may have sustained a tear.
The 33-year-old has been one of the few shining lights during the early part of the season and netted the only goal at Yeovil in Cherries’ first win of the campaign.
Boss Eddie Howe said: “Hopefully, it won’t be as long as we first thought but we don’t want to put too much pressure on him.”
News of Hughes’ absence was tempered somewhat by Mark Molesley’s return to full training earlier this week.
Molesley, who has been plagued by injury over the past two years, joined in with Howe’s squad both yesterday and today.
The 30-year-old lined up in Cherries’ first warm-up friendly at New Milton but has not featured for the first team this season and damaged his Achilles last month.
Molesley, who is still suffering some discomfort to the tendon, could be back in contention at the end of the month, providing he continues to make progress.
“It was great to see him back,” said Howe, who made Molesley one of his first permanent signings when he first took over as manager in January 2009.
“He has had a difficult time with injury and has got a great heart. We were really pleased to see him back.”
Midfielder Harry Arter, sidelined since suffering a rib injury against Brentford a month ago, is also back on the comeback trail.
Arter returned to full training last week before suffering a minor setback in the lead up to the visit of Orient, which ruled him against the Londoners.
Howe, who said Arter was being monitored on a daily basis, added: “We are hoping to build him up during the week. Whether or not he will be fit and available for Saturday, we don’t know yet.”
Long-term injury victims Stephen Purches and Charlie Sheringham are both continuing their respective rehabilitation programmes under the watchful eye of physio Steve Hard.
Purches, who has been out for nine months with a broken leg, started jogging on the training pitches last month, while Sheringham, sidelined since Boxing Day due to a foot injury, has been receiving intensive treatment at the FA’s new headquarters at St George’s Park.
Goalkeeper Darryl Flahavan, who had surgery to repair a shoulder problem three weeks ago, is due to start his rehab later this month.
- Cherries will entertain AFC Totton in the first round of the FA Youth Cup next month. The Stags, who play in Division One of the Hampshire Youth League, eliminated Bath City on Tuesday.