HEAD coach Scott Parker said David Brooks was “getting closer” to a return to full training as Cherries looked to step up his workload.

The Warrington-born star was diagnosed with stage two Hodgkin lymphoma back in October.

But the 24-year-old announced in May that he had completed his treatment and was now cancer free – hours before the Dorset club sealed promotion to the Premier League.

With Brooks having been working on a return since pre-season, Parker insisted the club would continue to “tread carefully” with him.

The Cherries boss did however reveal Brooks could take part in modified work alongside his squad “in the next 10 days”.

Asked for an update on Brooks during Thursday’s pre-match press conference, Parker told the Daily Echo: “He is progressing really well.

“Brooksy as well, probably in the next 10 days, maybe will start integrating a little bit with us – again modified, so not actually training but will be doing little bits with the team and start progressing and pushing forward.

“Probably the last week to 10 days has been his biggest volume of work in terms of really pushing on a little bit now.

“We treaded carefully before and there were a lot of factors involved in that, in terms of markers and seeing how he responds to the physical work - albeit that work was light.

“We have probably come through that a little bit now and now we are at the stage where we are going a little bit more in terms of trying to get him up to speed and fit to play football matches.

“He is doing really well with that. Fingers crossed that keeps moving in the right direction and he’s getting closer.”

Former Sheffield United and Manchester City man Brooks has made 91 appearances for Cherries, 30 of those came during his breakthrough season with the club in the 2018-19 campaign.

“David Brooks is a Premier League football player. He is top class in that sense,” said Parker.

“We lost him all last year. Now, to get him back will be like a signing for us really because we have missed his quality and missed him really.

“We will still tread carefully and we have one eye on that, but hopefully he gets through these coming weeks really and go from there.”