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Bucks delighted with Elliott's progress

Press Conference: Nathan Buckley Hear from Nathan Buckley after Collingwood's victory over Carlton.

Collingwood has eased concerns over the fitness of star forward Jamie Elliott but has lamented a quad injury sustained to swingman Ben Reid in the VFL over the weekend.

Elliott, who missed the entire 2018 season due to ankle and hamstring injuries, played a starring role in the Pies' narrow four-point victory over the Blues on Monday.

He kicked two goals from 10 disposals and four marks in a lively performance, but was withdrawn just before three-quarter time and didn't return to the field.

However, Collingwood coach Nathan Buckley had allayed any worries about his absence from the final term, saying he is tracking perfectly to be fit for round one.

"It was just precautionary," Buckley said.

"He wanted to continue and keep going, but that was our call to pull him.

"He's had a really strong pre-season and he's been in great shape, so he's cherry ripe for the beginning of the year."

The same can't be said for Reid, who suffered a quad injury in a VFL practice match on Sunday and looks set to be unavailable for the first period of the 2019 campaign.

Reid has dealt with a series of injury issues recently, playing just 47 games over the past five years, with the Magpies pinning their hopes on positive scan results in the coming days.

"We'll get the scans on that during the week," Buckley said.

"We're really disappointed for him. He's had a really strong pre-season, so it's bad timing.

"It's frustrating for 'Reidy' and for us, because he puts so much into it. He invests so much into the club, into his teammates and into his footy.

"Injuries happen. We've seen a lot this weekend across the competition. But in Reidy's particular case, we'd have loved to have seen him get a better run at it.

"He's put a power of work in, so we believe that if he persists he'll get to the other side of it because he's had a fairly strong pre-season up until here."

Carlton rallied from 21 points down at three-quarter time to draw level with Collingwood late in the final term of their clash in Morwell, only to fall just four points short.

But Blues assistant coach John Barker said the performance reflects a positive summer.

"There's some real positives to take from today regardless of the final score," Barker said.

"We've got a number of new players that are learning our system and there are parts of our system that are standing up at the moment.

"Even though there's still a lot of growth in a number of parts of the way we play and the mechanics of what we do, they are jelling together and their synergy continues to grow."