Bowles roars back after knee reconstruction
BRISBANE Roar defender Daniel Bowles has made a quicker than expected recovery from a knee reconstruction, playing 45 minutes in the club's weekend National Youth League match.
Bowles ruptured his anterior cruciate ligament and also damaged surrounding cartilage in February against Melbourne City and wasn't expected to return to action until January.
However, his encouraging progress on the training paddock convinced Roar coach John Aloisi and the club's medical staff that he was at least ready for youth team duty.
Bowles, 26, was used an over-age player in the Roar's NYL away match against Melbourne City on Saturday.
He played for the first 45 minutes before being replaced at the start of the second half by Callum Harris.
With City leading 3-0, the game was abandoned in the 50th minute due to a waterlogged pitch and nearby lightning.
It's understood City were awarded the three points because the second half had started and they were leading when the decision was made to stop the match.
Aloisi said Bowles would continue to play youth team football in the coming weeks.
"I don't know yet when I will be able to consider him for the A-League," Aloisi said.
Including Bowles, the Roar had six defenders unavailable for their 3-1 home win over Melbourne City last Friday night.
Also missing were Jade North (pubic bone), Luke DeVere (knee), Corey Brown (hamstring), Dane Ingham (international duty) and Ivan Franjic, who wasn't considered match-ready after recently re-joining the club following several weeks of inactivity.
Jacob Pepper, normally a midfielder, again filled in with distinction at centre back, while Connor O'Toole also made the most of another opportunity at left back.
Franjic, a member of the Socceroos' 2015 Asian Cup-winning squad, may come into selection consideration when the Roar visit Allianz Stadium on Saturday night to meet champions Sydney FC.