MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - MAY 08: Leigh Montagna of the Saints handballs away from a tackling Nick Dal Santo of the Kangaroos during the round seven AFL match between the St Kilda Saints and the North Melbourne Kangaroos at Etihad Stadium on May 8, 2016 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Michael Dodge/Getty Images)

St Kilda veteran Leigh Montagna is under a fitness cloud ahead of the Saints’ round one clash against Melbourne on March 25.

Montagna suffered a calf strain during pre-season and is yet to feature in the JLT Community Series, and has also been left out of St Kilda’s final JLT squad this weekend.

Saints football manager Jamie Cox said Montagna was still a chance to line up for the club in round one, citing Sandringham’s VFL practice match next weekend as a chance for the 33-year-old to find some match fitness.

“There’s that VFL game there, and we’ll have a pretty solid internal session on the Friday between JLT four and round one,” Cox told

“Both of those are in play if we think he’s a genuine chance and we just need to build up his workload.

“He’s no guarantee at this stage, but he’s tracking well and we’re still considering him for round one.

“There’s a few other football discussions around whether he’s actually done enough work, but someone of that experience, there’s a good case to back him in.”