ALBURY big man Luke Wells faces a race against time to be fit for the Tigers’ first round blockbuster against Yarrawonga.
Wells is managing a foot problem and is on a modified program.
He did not play in Saturday’s practice match against Eastlake.
The Tigers are optimistic Wells will prove his fitness for the grand final rematch at Albury Sportsground.
Albury has just one practice match remaining — against Benalla this Saturday — before taking the following weekend off before round 1.
With Wells highly unlikely to play this week, it could force coaches Chris Hyde and Daniel Maher to play their star ruckman without any form under his belt.
“We’re pretty confident he’ll be right but I guess it’s something we’ll have to weigh up when the time comes around,” Maher said.
Co-captains Luke Daly (knee) and Luke Packer (shoulder) have also been training on modified programs.
Daly could play against Benalla this week after running water for the Tigers at the weekend but Packer faces a delayed start to the season.
Albury’s annual Anzac Day showdown with North Albury looks the earliest return date for the small defender.
Andy Carey looks set to play his first pre-season game in years — this weekend joining his brother Justin in attack for the Tigers.