Gloucester's Duncan McRae was delighted to have completed 65 minutes in Monday night's 36-10 win over Saracens in front of more than 2,600 supporters at Kingsholm in the Zurich 'A' League win.
The 30 year-old Aussie has missed a number of months through neck and knee injuries this season, and made a timely return to the Gloucester shirt with three crucial Premiership games coming up.
Commenting on www.gloucesterrugbyclub.com after the second team clash with Saracens the fly-half said: "I'm just glad everything is back to normal now. I came through 65 minutes unscathed, and it's the biggest mental boost I could have had. I'm glad to get my head right and back on the field."
Director of rugby Nigel Melville will now be able to consider McRae for selection for Saturday's home clash against Leeds.
"Hopefully my name is now in the hat for the next few games, but there are guys ahead of me who deserve a chance. First things first, I'm just glad to be back," added McRae.
McRae's suffered a serious neck injury against Ulster at the end of October, which was followed by two knee injuries.
"I've tried to stay focussed and involved throughout the season, and kept telling myself I'd be back."
The former South Wales Waratahs player knows the final three games against Leeds (9 April), Sale (15 April) and Saracens (30 April) are key to Gloucester's season, as they push for a top three place, with only five points between them and third placed Sale.
"Saturday's game against Leeds is massive. We're still in with a chance of third place, and we have to fight it out with a number of other clubs."
Looking back at the impressive performance against Saracens in the 'A' League, and a returning Richard Hill, McRae said: "It was fantastic on Monday night. There was a good crowd of more than 2,500, and the young guys were tremendous, some of them are still attending assembly at school, which was a bit weird. The young talent coming through is a big positive for Gloucester."
Skipper for the day Aled Thomas praised his Gloucester team mates, especially the younger ones, for the way they took on a tough Ospreys outfit and emerged victorious in the LV= Cup on Saturday afternoon.
Gloucester will field a reshuffled side against the Ospreys in the LV= Cup this weekend, but Backs & Attack Coach Nick Walshe stressed that it's a great opportunity for everyone on duty on Saturday and that maintaining the recent winning run is very important.
Skipper Billy Twelvetrees told GRTV after the win in Brive that the game could have been a tough one to get up for, but that his Gloucester team mates did themselves proud on the night and got a big result.
Reflecting on the 31-20 victory in Brive on Thursday evening, Director of Rugby David Humphreys said that clinching a home European Rugby Challenge Cup quarter-final was the overall aim and duly achieved.
Gloucester Rugby and the Ospreys shared seven tries and 57 points in the LV= Cup at Kingsholm on Saturday. The Cherry and Whites came out on top and the club photographer captured the best of the action.