Martin ruled out of 2021 with ‘significant kidney injury’

Dustin Martin has been ruled out for the remainder of the 2021 season after suffering what Richmond has called a “significant kidney injury” in the team’s win over Brisbane on Friday night.

Martin was badly hurt and in serious pain after a collision with Brisbane Lions midfielder Mitch Robinson in the third term and failed to run out the remainder of the contest.

The 30-year-old was examined in the rooms and sent to a Gold Coast hospital for scans on Friday night before the Tigers’ flight back to Victoria on Saturday, but remained in hospital overnight. He is expected to stay in hospital under observation for “several days”.

Despite the setback for this season, Richmond club doctor Greg Hickey said Martin is expected to make a full recovery.

“Dustin stayed the night in hospital for observation and has been seen by a urologist this morning. He is feeling good and remains stable,” Hickey said in a club statement.

“Given the delicate nature of the injury and recovery timeline, he will not play football again this season.”

“We are incredibly disappointed that Dustin will spend some time on the sidelines, but we are focused on his immediate well-being right now,” added Richmond’s GM of Football, Tim Livingstone.

“Dustin is in great hands with the medical and support staff around him and we will support him however we can throughout his recovery.”

With their finals hopes hanging by a thread, the Tigers overcame a half-time deficit with a second-half surge to run out 16. 10. (106) to 13. 8. (86) winners at Metricon Stadium last night.

Martin’s latest diagnosis comes despite Richmond coach Damien Hardwick revealing that the Brownlow Medallist himself initially said that he would be fit to play next week.

“He got a kick into the stomach, we’ve sent him to the hospital for precautionary reasons,” Hardwick said.

“Obviously we’re flying home so we want to make sure he’d available to fly, it’d be a tough drive for Dusty otherwise. We’ll see how we go.

“He feels sore, but straight away he said he’d be fine for next week, but we’ll wait and see what the doctors say and what the scans show.”

The incident occurred at a centre bounce with just over four minutes left in the third quarter when Robinson charged off the wing to meet an on-rushing Martin head-on, leaving the Brownlow Medallist doubled down.

Martin was unable to get up onto his feet for several moments as he was attended to by Richmond’s medical staff, before eventually gingerly walking off the ground.

After initially sitting on the bench, Martin went down into Richmond’s rooms at three-quarter-time before being ruled out of the game with what the club originally called a rib injury.

With pivotal matches up against fellow finals contenders Geelong and Fremantle on the horizon in the next fortnight, Martin’s absence is a major blow to Richmond’s hopes of claiming three consecutive premierships.

Martin’s injury took some of the gloss off a welcome win for Damien Hardwick’s side, who had lost four straight matches coming into tonight’s clash.

The three-time Norm Smith Medallist was one of two Tigers injured, with wingman Kamdyn McIntosh substituted off in the first half with a hamstring injury, with Jack Ross coming on as the medical sub.

Richmond was boosted by Jack Riewoldt who nailed a season-high six goals in his 300th match, while young ruck-forward Mabior Chol added another four majors.

Riewoldt, who recently signed a new deal with the club, started the proceedings early by taking a signature high mark and nailing a goal in the opening minutes.

Richmond incredibly climbed five spots on the ladder after the 20-point win, jumping to seventh on the ladder with a match against the ladder-leading Geelong on deck in Round 19.

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