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Loss of Tom Mitchell gives Alastair Clarkson his biggest challenge

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Lose a soldier, replace them with another one.

That's been the Hawthorn catch-cry under Alastair Clarkson.

However it will be put to its greatest test in 2019 as reigning Brownlow medallist Tom Mitchell recovers from a serious broken leg.

As the 25-year-old has surgery on Saturday Hawthorn's brains trust will be putting their minds to how they rejig their midfield without the best ball-winner in the competition.

Best ball-winner in the competition: Tom Mitchell.Credit:AAP

If anyone can do that, then the masterful Clarkson can, having reorganised the Hawks' forward line when Lance Franklin joined Sydney before engineering then managing the departures of club........

© Brisbane Times