TONY Mowbray labelled Blackburn Rovers’ win at Hibernian “a good start” to pre-season.

It was a first run-out for Rovers against a Scottish Premier League side who had a couple of friendlies under their belt ahead of their Europa League qualifier this week.

But after a young line-up kept Hibs at bay in the first half, a more experienced 11 replaced them at the break to secure a win and clean sheet, with Craig Conway and Willem Tomlinson scoring in four second half minutes.

Rovers are fresh from a pre-season training camp in Austria, and Mowbray says his squad is where he wants it to be at this stage of pre-season.

“It was different for us to go away from day one and work really hard. I think the players have taken that on board and now we’re into the football bit,” he said.

“But it’s all about being ready in four weeks’ time and that’s what we plan to do.

“On the back of Austria where we worked really hard and did a lot of running it was good to get on the pitch and play a game.

“I think there were some positives there, the main one being the workload they put in and nobody got injured.

“We started with a pretty young team because I felt the game was going to be fairly fast early on with Hibs preparing for a European tie so there were the youthful legs of a team in the first half and in the second half more experience.

“As long as everyone got 45 minutes then I was pleased with that.”

Mowbray handed a debut to new signing Jacob Davenport.

Of the midfielder’s contribution, the Rovers boss said: “Jacob’s a good economical footballer, he keeps it moving. The formations today, I just tried to put them in positions they were going to be comfortable in really and so we sat him in the middle of the pitch and just let him feed it around.

“He worked really hard.”

While Rovers fielded 22 players across the 90 minutes, Rovers were without goalkeeper David Raya and Dominic Samuel after both players picked up minor knocks in training.

“There are no concerns with either of them,” said Mowbray.

“David felt his groin a little bit in training and we felt it wasn’t worth him putting himself under pressure.

“Dominic’s done every session in pre-season then on Saturday morning in the session he felt his knee.

“Again I’m sure he’s fine and he’ll be ready and available for next weekend but we didn’t want to take the risk. He didn’t finish the training session so we just left him out.”

Rovers provided the opposition for long-serving Hibernian defender Paul Hanlon, who has been at Easter Road since the age of 16.

And Mowbray, who managed Hibs between 2004 and 2006, was delighted to return.

“I really enjoyed it. It brought back a lot of memories,” he said.

“It’s great to see the club progressing and getting bigger and better all the time.”