SCOTT Fenwick is being wrapped in cotton wool ahead of the trip to Bury with Hartlepool United keen to avoid an operation on a troublesome ankle knock.
The star striker has been playing through the pain barrier but hasn’t trained since Tuesday and remains a major doubt ahead of tomorrow’s Sky Bet League Two match at Gigg Lane (KO 3pm).
The 24-year-old - who has netted five goals in seven starts - first injured his ankle at Tranmere Rovers and missed the Northampton Town match but came off the bench to score in the 3-1 defeat to Stevenage.
He is set to go for a scan, with Pools anxiously waiting on the results.
“We are just waiting on Scott, his ankle is sore,” Moore told SportMail.
“As a security we will get it scanned and see what the outcome is. Scott trained Tuesday but was sore.
“He’s with Buster [Ian Gallagher] and we will see.
“When we played at Tranmere he got a whack then and he’s been carrying it since. He’s over stretched it in training as well.
“Sometimes you can drain it off, or a steroid injection works too.
“But if not, it could be an operation which is four to six weeks out or put it in a boot for a few weeks to settle down.
“Right now, we don’t know the answer.”
Moore describes him as his side’s “only threat” and with Pools seven points adrift of safety, Fenwick’s inclusion is vital to the club’s survival hopes.
Having been critical of Marlon Harewood and Marvin Morgan after the defeat to Stevenage, the Pools boss admits he is even toying with the idea of playing defender Scott Harrison up front.
“Scott [Fenwick] has come on 100 per cent since I’ve been here”, added Moore.
“I wasn’t too sure when I came and he was playing in straight lines like a non-league striker.
“Now we’ve got him playing off the shoulder and he’s getting caught offside now.
“It’s a learning curve, he’s never done it before and it’s about timing runs but he is the only threat for us right now.
“The goal threat at the moment is down to one man and we need more than that. Do we move [Jonathan] Franks up front? But that disrupts things.
“If I was brave enough, Scotty Harrison in training reminds me of myself as a player.
“He’s a centre-half not a forward but has ability, good finish, heads it and can finish.
“Sometimes you get a gut feeling as a manager and made to look good or silly.
“Are we at desperation stages yet to try it?
“I’ll keep thinking of it for now.”
While Moore waits on the fitness of Fenwick, he will definitely be without Matthew Bates who is still suffering from a dead leg, while Tommy Miller (calf) won’t be risked at his former club as he continues to step up his return from injury.
Moore added: “Batesy is the same, he has a dead leg and normally they only last a week but sometimes they can be severe.
“Batesy won’t be ready for tomorrow.
“Tommy was pulled out of the reserves as Buster wants to work him more and hopefully he will return to training on Monday.”
Nicky Featherstone is free to play despite being sent-off for the reserves at Hull City midweek.