AFL

Young West Coast Eagle Damien Cavka forced to retire because of foot injury

Young West Coast Eagles midfielder Damien Cavka's dream of playing AFL football has been shattered after he was forced to retire because of a debilitating foot injury.

The 19-year-old, originally from Victoria, set tongues wagging at the Eagles when he blitzed his teammates to win the two-kilometre time trial in his first pre-season last year.

It was shortly after the time trial his foot first flared up. Despite Cavka having a number of operations, he's had to give the game away after his condition was diagnosed as hereditary.

Cavka, who was picked up by the Eagles with pick 66 in the 2014 National Draft, told his teammates on Monday morning he was hanging up his boots, before he had a chance to play a game with the club.

Eagles coach Adam Simpson said it was "terribly disappointing" for Damien.

"Shattering actually, that he won't be able to pursue the dream of playing senior footy," he said on the Eagles website

"But he's a quality young man, with strong support around him and he will get the direction he needs to focus on the next phase of his life.

"We didn't get to see him play a lot of footy, but Damien had an impact around the group in the last 14 months and had won the respect of the rest of the players and the coaching staff."

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