Barry Fuller has handed AFC Wimbledon a boost at the start of pre-season training by returning two weeks ahead of schedule.
Our captain, who has been out since February with an injury to his left pectoralis muscle that required an operation, told us last month that he was aiming to return early – and Neal Ardley confirmed that he was ready for full training.
"He was not due to join in until two weeks into pre-season, but 'Baz' being 'Baz' he has gone beyond the call of duty," said Neal. "He is ahead of schedule and it itching to go again. Stuart Douglas just wanted to do some stuff with him, but he has done most of it. I am sure he will be back in full training tomorrow (Tuesday). The big test will come when someone yanks his arm in a game or he gets a smash on it. We will have to wait for that moment, but I am sure he has done enough work on it to make it stronger than it was in the first place."
Neal added that midfielder Tom Soares is also making good progress after missing the end of last season due to a hairline fracture of his distal tibia and Jon Meades (knee) is close to a return.
"We felt that Tom would not be joining in until three weeks into pre-season, but as it stands we are hoping that he may be able to join in next week, along with Jon Meades," said Neal. "They will be a week behind the boys in football terms, but they have been doing a lot of running. It should not take them too long to catch-up."