Dickov optimistic Jones will make swift return

Rob Jones.
Rob Jones.
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DONCASTER ROVERS manager Paul Dickov is relieved after receiving a positive injury prognosis regarding Rob Jones.

There were fears that the Rovers defender and Keepmoat cult hero would be out for a second extended spell – or worse – after he went off with a re-occurrence of a neck injury on Tuesday.

The 34-year-old, substituted after just 12 minutes of the 1-1 draw with Preston, was sidelined for almost 10 months last term in a virtual write-off of a campaign which saw him go under the knife for potentially career-saving neck surgery.

But Dickov has allayed fears regarding Jones – named in the League One team of the year when Rovers got promoted in 2012-13 – who could be available for tomorrow’s League One trip to Colchester.

Dickov, mindful that any extended loss of Jones would have left him light in terms of defensive options, said: “It’s positive news. Rob has spoken to his specialist and consultant and he’s improved a lot over the past couple of days.

“He has a fighting chance of being fit for Saturday, which is positive news all around.

“I think everyone did fear the worst, myself included and Rob. But the consultant has basically said that if he hadn’t had any previous neck injury, nobody would be worrying or panicking.”

Dickov has confirmed the future of fellow defender Paul Quinn, who has a relegation related-clause allowing him to leave Rovers for nothing up until August 31, is likely to be resolved today.

Ex-captain Richie Wellens, who has a similar clause, is still training with the first team.

Meanwhile, former Keepmoat PLC chief executive David Blunt has been unveiled as the new chairman of Rovers, while major shareholder Dick Watson is the club’s new president.

Rovers had been without a chairman since November, when John Ryan stepped down.

Blunt, 66, owns a nine per cent stake in Rovers, the fourth largest behind Terry Bramall, Watson and Ryan.

Blunt said: “Terry and Dick have done an excellent job in steering this club during the past few years, helping to fund two promotions and five seasons of Championship football.

“I hope that during my time as chairman here we can build a solid foundation for the club to be successful both on and off the field.”