Cairns' Thwaite plans to go for Glory on Oz Day
PERTH Glory defender Michael Thwaite is eying the A-League grand final replay on Australia Day as a return date from injury.
The Edge Hill product is recovering from a calf tear suffered in last week's draw with Western Sydney and believes he should be fit for the January 26 showdown against Brisbane Roar.
"I'm up and walking around fine, which is a good. Now it's just the rehab," Thwaite said yesterday.
"These kinds of tears usually take four weeks, so I'm hopeful everything continues as planned and I should be back for the Roar game."
The return of the 29-year-old Socceroo could not come soon enough for the back-deprived Perth Glory.
With Thwaite injured and fellow centre-back Bas van den Brink seeing red on Monday night, the Glory's defensive stocks will be tested.
"It's not an ideal situation, but I have full confidence in whoever (coach Ian Ferguson) puts back there," Thwaite said.
"We're playing at home this week, where we are always pretty confident.
"I don't think there's a team in the A-League that likes to make the trip to Perth."
Thwaite was looking for a silver lining to his injury-enforced break.
After experiencing a heavy workload in 2012, the rehab may give his body time to recover ahead of the A-League finals.
"Looking back on it, I think I might have just played one game too many," he said.
"I was feeling some tightness in my calf in the matches before that, but I just ignored my body, as we athletes sometimes do, and I paid the price for it.
"But it's no major setback. On a personal level, 2012 was a great year for me and I'm looking to improve on it in 2013."
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Time off: Edge Hill product and Perth Glory defender Michael Thwaite is helped from the field by a trainer and Billy Mehmet last weekend.