West Coast premiership coach Adam Simpson says both Josh Kennedy and Nic Naitanui are progressing well in their injury recoveries.
Naitanui required a second knee reconstruction after landing awkwardly in a ruck contest last year, while Kennedy missed parts of the season with a hairline fracture in his shin.
Simpson says Naitanui is close to resuming full training, and could return before originally anticipated.
“He’ll be (back) before Round 10,” he told SEN’s Whateley.
“He’s tracking well, better than the last knee.
“(There’s) less issues and less setbacks, so each box he ticks, he gets to the next stage, so he’s not far off training.
“His season will probably start in probably three or four weeks.
“He’ll start a pre-season block that hopefully gets him ready around that Round 8 or 9 mark.”
Star forward Kennedy won’t play in the Eagles’ JLT clash against the Dockers this weekend, and Simpson says he won’t rush him for Round 1.
“Round 1- whilst it’s my priority at the moment, I think we need to understand that we want him for the full season,” the West Coast coach told Gerard Whateley.
“He’s fit and he’s training.
“It’s just now chasing a line of Round 1 so whether it’s Round 1 or Round 2, that’s up for grabs.
“He’s normally pretty good at getting right.
“We just don’t want to get him right for a few weeks and then breaking down because he came back too early.”
The Eagles will face off against Brisbane in Round 1 at the Gabba.
Listen to Whateley’s full interview with the Eagles coach in the player below.