PORTLAND will be without on-baller Aaron Shepherd for its round one clash against reigning premiers Koroit.
Coach Jarrod Holt confirmed the former Greater Western Victoria Rebel would miss due to a knee injury.
"He has a knee niggle but he is not far away. He won't play round one but he will most likely be back round two or three," he said.
"He got a knock playing basketball in the backyard. Hopefully he can get on top of that as he is a good player for us."
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Shephard won the club's best and fairest as a 19-year-old in a breakout year in 2018, his first at senior level.
The Tigers kick off their season at home at Hanlon Park to the Saints, who are coming off a strong start against fellow premiership contenders South Warrnambool on Good Friday.
Returning player Jake Edwards (Melbourne) and recruits Josh Jenner (North Gambier), Harrison Hampshire (Geelong) could make their debuts for the club this weekend.
Holt, who is entering his second year as coach, said the Tigers would field a fairly young side in 2021.
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