Will Foden is counting down the days to the start of the new Championship season - and also his lucky stars.
The 25-year-old back row was told he may never play rugby again this time last year after a freak accident shattered his knee.
Twelve months on, and several operations later, Foden is remarkably in contention for a shirt in Doncaster’s league opener against Plymouth Albion a week on Saturday.
The former Cinderford captain joined Knights last summer but his world was turned upside down during pre-season.
“I had an equine livery yard in Worcester and my partner at the time was lunging a horse,” recalled Foden.
“I was with my dog in the field when I heard a scream.
“I looked over to see the horse trying to trample her and ran in grabbing the horse by its head collar.
“I knew the horse was going to bolt and it double-barrel kicked me in the side of my knee, basically snapping my leg in half. It was hanging on by the skin.
“As soon as I did it I was so upset, not because I was in pain but because I thought I had lost everything that I had worked for rugby-wise.”
Foden has since undergone two ligament transplant operations, intense physiotherapy and also two minor follow-up operations.
He made a scoring return in Knights’ pre-season opener at Neath and also featured in the wins over Swansea and Newcastle.
“I feel lucky to be back, but I am not lucky because I am back in this position because I got myself here,” he said.
“I’ve given up a lot to be here, my relationship, another career, and put all my eggs in one basket to get here.
“Now all I want to do is play.
“Growing up I’ve only ever wanted to be a professional rugby player.
“I got a sniff of it in the Gloucester academy and at Exeter when I was younger but that was while I was at university. This is my job now.
“I am ambitious and always want to push myself as far as I can go.
“How far that is, time will tell, but it is good to be back.”