NRL Rd 1 - Raiders v Wests Tigers
CANBERRA, AUSTRALIA - MARCH 14: Stefano Utoikamanu of the Tigers in action during the round one NRL match between the Canberra Raiders and the Wests Tigers at GIO Stadium, on March 14, 2021, in Canberra, Australia. (Photo by Mark Nolan/Getty Images)

The Wests Tigers have confirmed Adam Doueihi's return to the NRL is imminent, while key forward Stefano Utoikamanu could miss a month with a foot injury.

Doueihi has been undergoing a long-term recovery from an ACL injury he sustained at the back-end of last season.

Initially, it was hoped he could return as early as Round 12, and then late last week he was almost certain to return during Round 14 when the struggling Tigers will play their first game since sacking coach Michael Maguire against the Manly Sea Eagles.

The star half, who can also play at fullback or in the centres, was absent from the team list when it was named on Tuesday afternoon however.

A club statement revealed Doueihi has "a bit of work" left to do.

"Adam Doueihi was targeting a Round 14 return but still has a bit of work to do before he’s good to go," the statement read.

"Doueihi is yet to play in 2022 after undergoing a knee reconstruction late last season. He’s been gradually increasing his load in training and is getting stronger by the week. A return to the NRL is imminent."

Utoikamanu was another surprise absence from this week's side to play Manly.

He has struggled to make it back into the starting 13 since returning from an early-season injury which required surgery, being limited in minutes coming off the bench.

It has now been revealed by the club that he has been playing with a foot injury, and will now require up to a month on the sidelines to return again.

In his four appearances since returning, he has managed just 22, 41, 34 and 31 minutes of playing time off the bench in Maguire's side.

In better news for the Tigers, Asu Kepaoa has been named to play in the NSW Cup against the Blacktown Workers Sea Eagles despite suffering a foot injury, while the club have also revealed that James Roberts and Oliver Gildart are both chances of returning through reserve grade from back and calf injuries respectively.