Worcestershire bowling coach Matt Mason is delighted to see the return to fitness and action ahead of schedule of "terrific young prospect" Josh Tongue. 

Paceman Tongue was expected to be ruled out for three months with a back problem suffered in early May.

But Tongue's comeback is several weeks ahead of schedule and he has already played for the Seconds.

He featured in one of the two T20s game with Yorkshire at Marske and then bowled nine overs and picked up two wickets in the Championship match at Scarborough last week.

Tongue impressed when making his first team debut against Oxford MCCU at The Parks in April.

Mason, who is also the county's assistant coach, said: "I've known him a long time, from when he was very young, so to see him develop the way he has is really exciting and he is a terrific young man, very keen to learn.

"He has got a fantastic natural ability to hit a good line and length and we know with his skills and potential to get more pace, in a year or two's time he could be a really exciting bowler for us.

"He did well at Oxford. That was a real eye-opener for all of us. He really got people talking and gave us a real glimpse of what we can see in the future and it is really exciting."

Mason said that Tongue's comeback is being carefully monitored by first team physiotherapist Ben Davies and strength and conditioning coach Ross Dewar.

Tongue was only allowed to bowl a certain number of overs in the game at Scarborough as part of the return to bowling plan.

Mason said: "We are obviously going to be monitoring his progress and keep moving him forward but we are not going to rush him. It is really important we get this right and everything he has done has been to the letter.

"He is ahead of schedule thanks to the work he has done with Ben Davies and Ross Dewar and Josh himself. He has worked really hard."