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Knights nightmare finally over

December 30, 2014 11:26:50 UK

Richmond forward Chris Knights hopes he is finally on track to make a successful playing return in the AFL, nearly two years after suffering an injury that threatened his career.

The 28-year-old has not played since Round 7 of the 2013 campaign, when he sustained a serious knee injury against Port Adelaide.

He spent the whole of last season on the sidelines, after picking up a quad injury during his comeback attempt.

But he says after going well so far in pre-season, he is starting to believe again that he can get back to his best with Richmond, who are 19.00 to win the Grand Final.

This been one of the hardest training blocks I’ve done in my AFL career and to get through it unscathed and feeling good the whole time gives me great confidence,

Chris Knights

“This been one of the hardest training blocks I’ve done in my AFL career and to get through it unscathed and feeling good the whole time gives me great confidence,” he said.

“All I’m going to focus on is making sure I’m doing everything I can to get my body right and play the best I can, and whatever happens, it will take place. Then at least I can look back and say I did everything.”

Knights made his debut in 2005 for Adelaide and went on to play 96 games and kick 68 goals for the Crows.

His best patch of form came in 2009 when he became the most accurate goalkicker in the competition, having booted 21.3 from 24 scoring shots.

After signing for Richmond during the free agency period in 2012, he started the following season well with six goals in his first five games.

Everything fell apart for him in split second, though, as he tore his patella tendon off the bone against Port Adelaide and needed season-ending surgery.

Subsequent setbacks left him worried about his playing future, before an arthroscope last May discovered a piece of floating bone near his knee.

Surgeons removed it, and three months later he was finally in a position to start his comeback.

Knights was involved in every training session before Christmas, the first time in five years he has been injury-free throughout that period.

He said: “I’m one of three or four vying for the same position and if we’re all playing good football, at least I and the others can hold our heads high if the team is winning.”

Richmond are 2.05 to finish in the top eight in 2015.

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