Richmond defender Nick Vlastuin will miss the early rounds of the home and away season as he continues to recover from a hamstring injury.

Tigers coach Damien Hardwick confirmed Vlastuin won't feature in Thursday's clash with Carlton and may miss the 10-day turnaround for his side's Round 2 bout with Greater Western Sydney on Sunday, March 27.

Vlastuin suffered tightness in his hamstring during the Tigers' practice match against Geelong last month and has since required treatment ahead of Richmond's season opener.

"Nick had a bit of a setback so he'll probably miss a couple of early rounds, which is a little bit disappointing, because it's such an important player," Hardwick said on Tuesday.

"We want to make sure when he comes back he's right to go.


"It's been a little bit of a challenging injury that we've had a little bit of difficulty with, but he will respond hopefully well and be back in the early rounds."

While Hardwick has put a line through Vlastuin's selection for Round 1, the three-time premiership coach is yet to rule out pair Jack Graham and Dylan Grimes, who are battling hamstring and thumb injuries respectively.

Grimes is likely to line up against the Blues this week, while Graham will need to prove his fitness in the coming days.

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After initially being in doubt for this week, Grimes' rapid turnaround has placed him on course for selection.

"Dylan's responded really well," Hardwick said. "We probably thought he'd be some form of doubt for Round 1.

"He trained strongly Sunday and he'll hopefully train strongly again today."

"Graham will train today, he'll be a chance. We'll just assess how he's moving and how he responds to training."


With Grimes tipped to feature in his first appearance as co-captain of Richmond, his partner in Toby Nankervis is currently undergoing the AFL's health and safety protocols just days out from Round 1.

Hardwick confirmed the Tigers tall has been in isolation since last Wednesday, meaning the ex-Swan will be available for selection against Carlton.

"He's running circles around the house. I think bouncing the balls off the wall," Hardwick joked.

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - AUGUST 09: Toby Nankervis of the Tigers handballs during a Richmond Tigers AFL training session at Punt Road Oval on August 09, 2019 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)

"Hopefully his house needs a bit of demo work, he'll be fired up when he gets out."

Lastly, midfielder Kane Lambert will miss the start of the 2022 AFL season as he undergoes a separate training program to recover from a niggling hip injury.

The Tigers weighed up whether to place Lambert under the knife, which would have sidelined the onballer for a majority of the season, however have opted to "push through" with his recovery.

"Lambert is starting a training block now. So we saw some surgeons, had a couple of conversations but we're going to push through.

"Hopefully he's not too far away."

The Tigers will unveil top draftee Josh Gibcius on Thursday night as they eye a 12th straight victory over the Blues.