AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND - MARCH 16: Tohu Harris of the Warriors makes a break during the round 1 NRL match between the New Zealand Warriors and the Canterbury Bulldogs at Mt Smart Stadium on March 16, 2019 in Auckland, New Zealand. (Photo by Phil Walter/2019 Getty Images)

The New Zealand Warriors could be set to welcome back Tohu Harris in mid-May.

The club's captain had his season ended by an ACL injury, with a full recovery required from the injury. ACL injuries generally take between six and nine months to recover from, which would have set his return to play timeline somewhere between March and May.

A May return could be a few weeks behind schedule, however, ACL injuries are tricky to deal with and can at times leave players out of the game for 12 months following a lengthy return process and restrenghtening of the knee.

Harris confirmed to AAP that he has undergone surgery successfully and is targeting a mid-May return to the NRL, with a return to contact training early in the New Year.

"It's been on track so far. I've been able to get some running in on the field and it feels good to stretch the legs," he said.

"I've got to be patient, I'm not too sure of the timeline because I'll try and push things.

"I think the only one that we are going off is the nine-month mark. That's the guideline of when you return from an ACL injury.

"There are cases where you can come back earlier. The nine-month mark for me is about mid-May so somewhere around round 8 in the season."

Harris, as the club captain, would make a claim to be the Warriors' most important player during the 2021 season.

His work both at lock and in the second-row has been outstanding for the club ever since he made the switch from the Melbourne Storm, with Harris now own of the game's premier forwards.

His loss to the Warriors could be a devastating blow for the first eight rounds of the 2022 season, and the club will be hopeful of the return timeline moving to an earlier one than currently listed.

That will be even more so the case with the Warriors being forced to play the Roosters and Storm in back-to-back matches away from home at the end of April, before they take on the Raiders, Sharks and Rabbitohs in what will be an extremely difficult five-week period for Nathan Brown's side.

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