Scott Wharton returned to full training for the first time today after nine months out with a ruptured Achilles.

The central defender has been out since undergoing surgery on the injury sustained in the 2-2 draw at Brentford in December.

The 23-year-old made eight appearances last season after returning from a successful loan spell at Northampton Town and was looking to cement his place in the side when injury struck.

He has worked hard to overcome the injury and will now press forward with the final stages of his rehabilitation, with an Under-23s fixture the next milestone for him to hit.

“He was back in full training, first day,” Mowbray said.

“He’s been out nine months, he’s going to have to train for three or four weeks now I’d suggest to get to the point where he’s frustrated why he’s not playing.

“He will get an Under-23s game in the next few weeks and we’ll try and build him up.”

Wharton had been loaned out extensively during Mowbray’s time at the club, with just three appearances under the manager before last season.

There Mowbray felt Wharton had added the necessary physicality to his game that could see him compete to be a regular in the Championship.

“He was doing well,” Mowbray said.

“The maturity is there for him, he had a couple of seasons in League One and League Two and built up a reputation.

“My phone rang every window for Scotty Wharton, he came in and did very well in the Championship for us in the games he played and then unfortunately picked up an injury.

“Hopefully his rehabilitation back to full fitness will be smooth and he’s nearly there, he’s on the grass and joined in with the group for the first time.”

While Wharton won’t be back for this weekend, Mowbray will also be without Sam Gallagher as he struggles with a thigh problem and Bradley Johnson remains sidelined by a hamstring injury that has kept him out since the opening pre-season friendly at AFC Fylde.

Joe Rankin-Costello (metatarsal) is still not ready to feature, but there was better news on summer signings Tayo Edun.

He hasn’t been involved in the two matchday squads since signing on deadline day from Lincoln City because of an ankle ligament issue, but will be in the squad for Saturday’s trip to Barnsley, as will Leeds United loanee Ian Poveda who has missed the last two matches with a hamstring strain.

Fellow new signing Jan Paul van Hecke remains out until after the October international break.

“Tayo trained today and looked good and will be in contention,” Mowbray said.

“Bradley Johnson did not train today, we’re easing him in with a hard day and then an easy day to try and get him off the grass when he needs to.

“Joe Rankin-Costello isn’t ready yet, Sam Gallagher isn’t ready.

“Poveda trained today and looked good, he’s got magic feet. He’ll be added to the squad. He’s ready, it’s not as though he’s been out for weeks, he’s just missed a few days and will be added to the squad as long as he doesn’t come in tomorrow saying he’s sore.

“Hopefully as the weeks roll by there will be more. Rankin-Costello has been out there, Bradley Johnson has been back a while, and hopefully the game-time Reda (Khadra) had the other night will help him and the numbers are starting to look a little bit healthier.”