Fremantle forward Scott Gumbleton gave his return to football after more than three months out with a hamstring injury a tick on Saturday.
Gumbleton lined up for Peel Thunder in their 25-point loss to East Fremantle for the first time since he was drafted by Essendon with the No.2 pick in the 2006 draft.
The 25-year-old started on the bench, playing his first game since suffering the serious hamstring injury in the pre-season.
The injury-prone big man ran 9km over 63 minutes, taking seven marks and booting 1.1.
“It all went to plan,” Gumbleton said after the game.
“I would like to be out there for a bit more but they held me back a bit, which is OK.
“I felt really good.
“I just thought I would go out there and jump at balls and see how we went and I was lucky enough to grab a few but obviously disappointed with the result.”
Gumbleton said he would build his playing time in the coming weeks, and admitted it was a strange feeling to be back where it all began after crossing to Fremantle in the off-season.
“It’s great to be back here where I played my junior footy and started playing footy I guess,” he said.
“This is the club I was drafted from so it’s fantastic to be back here and contributing for them.”
Gumbleton said he wasn’t even thinking about a recall to AFL level at this stage.
“I was told just to come out here and get the feel for the game again and that’s what I did,” he said.
“It (the rehab period) was frustrating but once you get moving again and get back into it you can see the light at the end of the tunnel.”