Patient Walkes right back into Portsmouth frame
The door has finallyÂ been unlocked to allow Anton Walkes' first-team return.
Now the versatile performer is bidding to capitalise on his new-found opportunity as Pompey's right-back.
Undisputed first-choice Nathan Thompson has been sidelined for a month afterÂ tearing his hamstring in the Boxing Day defeat at Gillingham.
It's a blow for the Blues, with the combative full-back enjoying an outstanding campaign which has seen the side top League One for more than three months.
Still, Walkes has now been offered the chance to deputise, a familiar role for the ex-Spurs player since his initial loan arrival in January 2018.
A goal-scoring return in the 5-2 triumph at Fleetwood marked his first league start in eight fixtures.
And, with today's visit of AFC Wimbledon (3pm), WalkesÂ is targeting continuingÂ making a positive impact upon his Blues recall.
He said: '˜That's just how it is in football, people pick up injuries, this is what I train for.
'˜I want to play, it's frustrating sometimes but we're doing wellÂ so I can't really complain.
'˜You sit and waitÂ your turn, only 11 players can start and it's a 25-man squad. That's something I understand, I'm a footballer.
'˜Nathan (Thompson)Â is a great person to be around, I have learnt a lot of things from him, the way he conducts himself on and off the pitch is very professional.
'˜Unfortunately he's injured, but hopefully I can add some of the qualities I possessÂ to what I have been watching and help the team.
'˜You don't want to be sitting out, so hopefully I can keep myself in a good condition and keep performing.'
Walkes has made 27 appearances in his Pompey career, scoring twice.
His versatility has proven useful for Jackett, employing the 21-year-old as a holding midfielder, central defender, but mainly right-back.
Walkes' lengthiest spells in the side during his 12-month stay have arrived in the injury absence of Thompson.
And once again he has a job to carry out to the best of his ability.
He added: '˜I've just got to do my job, there's nothing too complicated.
'˜My priority is defending and making sure we stay solid at the back, earning aÂ few more clean sheets because we have enough forward power to win the game.
'˜That's about it really!'