Ryan McGowan has agreed a new contract at Hearts which will keep him at Tynecastle for another five years.
The highly-rated defender still has two years remaining on his current deal, but a number of assured displays for the U19s and reserves have persuaded the club to offer him an improved deal.
The Australian is yet to make a competitive appearance for the club, but was named among the substitutes for the 0-0 draw with Kilmarnock on Saturday.
He was also recently named the club's U19 Player of the Year, and has been assured by boss Steve Frail that he will feature at some point during the end of season run-in.
McGowan's agent Lou Sticca is delighted to see his client doing so well and expects him to become an integral part of Hearts' defence in the near future.
"Ryan has been at the club a few seasons and has done really well," Sticca told the Edinburgh Evening News.
"My partner in the UK, Dave McPherson, tells me that Ryan is very close to the first team and Dave is naturally a very good judge of what it takes.
"He rates Ryan as capable of going a long way in the Scottish game, so I'm delighted for Ryan.
"I think the length of the contract shows that Hearts see a lot of potential in him. I know that he was on the bench last week and that he has a chance of playing in the first-team before the end of the season.
"If that happens it happens but if it doesn't he has time on his side because he's young, strong and ambitious."