England scrum-half Ben Youngs is set to boost club and country by returning to first-team action ahead of schedule.
The Leicester No 9 required a shoulder operation after sustaining a bad injury in the second Test defeat to South Africa in the summer.
Youngs, 23, has been responding well to his rehabilitation schedule and could to return to the Tigers' ranks for the Aviva Premiership trip to Sale on 5 October.
"Ben Youngs should be available to play some part of the game against Sale," said Leicester director of rugby Richard Cockerill.
"He is doing really well, has been doing contact training and his shoulder is in good shape.
"His rehab has gone really well."