STRIKE legend Andy Booth is back in training with Town and ready for a first run-out of the new season in Saturday's friendly at Middlesbrough.
The 30-year-old frontman missed Monday's 2-1 victory against Wakefield and Emley because of a slight hamstring strain but has responded well to treatment.
He joined the squad for a tough early session at Storthes Hall today and was expected to be among the favourites for a light-hearted afternoon cricket challenge among the players.
While Pawel Abbott and John McAliskey are also in the mix, a frontline partnership of Booth and Junior Mendes might well cause a stir in Coca-Cola League I, but Jackson is just glad to have the local hero back on duty.
"Boothy has been brilliant in training since we came back and I only left him out at Emley as a precaution," confirmed Jackson.
"Like everyone else, Andy has enjoyed a bit of a break this summer, but he has come back lean and strong and keen to give us 100% again.
"Last season was probably the best he's had in years and he really enjoyed it. People told me when I returned to the club that Boothy wouldn't play many games because of injuries, but he started 43 matches last season and proved everyone wrong.
"For me, he was one of our outstanding players, he did a great job as skipper for a while and took his goal tally for the club to 100, which was simply tremendous.
"To cap it all, he finished up by lifting the Nationwide Trophy at the Millennium Stadium when we won the play-off final and, for a local lad, there can be no greater honour than that."
Jackson will again take his full squad to Boro's training ground for the behind-closed-doors clash which precedes three away matches in a week against non-League opposition in Ossett Town (Monday), Bradford PA (Wednesday) and Harrogate Town (Saturday week).
"Steve Yates also missed out at Emley but he's making a very good recovery from having his Achilles scraped clean in a minor operation and he should be ready to play a part on Saturday," added Jackson.
"It all means that competition for places is good and we want it to stay that way as we prepare for the season.
"It's a gradual build-up and mainly geared towards fitness levels, but we are already looking forward to the opening game over at Stockport."