Craig Halkett on schedule for Hearts return after surgery
Craig Halkett is on schedule to reach full fitness for the start of Hearts’ Premiership season as he continues recovering from ankle surgery.
The central defender travelled with team-mates to Spain on Friday for the club’s summer training camp but is not yet participating in full sessions. Estimations are that he will join in within the next two weeks, although his progress won’t be rushed.
Hearts see him as a crucial part of their team for the 2022/23 campaign and want to ensure he is properly fit before throwing him into competitive action.
Halkett suffered the injury against Hibs back on April 16 and missed a month of football before returning to face Rangers in the final league game of last season. He then managed 120 minutes in the Scottish Cup final the following week before undergoing an operation to cure the problem
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“He got an op two days after the cup final so he's back doing individual training,” explained manager Robbie Neilson. “He's come to Spain and done running but he should be back about two weeks into pre-season. He should be ready for the start of the season.
“He'll get three weeks of pre-season under his belt with the group. He got injured in the semi-final and needed an op but the surgeon said we could wait until after the final. So as soon as that was done we got him in and he should be fine.”
Neilson is also relieved to retain Peter Haring for the new season after the Austrian midfielder signed a one-year contract extension.
“I'm delighted. It took a while to get him there so we're pleased,” said Neilson. “Peter brings us experience, quality and he did really well for us last season. I expect him to do it again this year.
“He knows what this place is all about after being here a number of years. One of the big things was keeping continuity within the group. We were successful last year, we're going to add more faces but the guys who have done well have stayed so we've kpet that same continuity.”