Melbourne Rebel’s James ‘Bobby’ Tuttle says he’s thrilled to be back at training with his teammates and is eyeing a return to rugby as soon as the new season starts.
The exciting scrumhalf participated in team training drills on Gosch’s Paddock for the first time this week after successfully overcoming his second achilles injury.
Tuttle says he’s excited to be back and operating at full capacity after such a long layoff.“It’s such a good feeling – finally back at training.
“We’ve been allowed to go more back into full team training, so I’ve been able to join the boys in team drills, which has been the first time doing that in over 20 months.
“So, it’s been a long-time coming, but coronavirus has obviously put a bit of a stop on it.“But now we’re back kicking and running through with the team, so it’s really great to be back.”
After re-rupturing his achilles last year, a return to action in 2020 appeared in serious doubt, however following an unprecedented pause in competition, Tuttle’s dreams to play this season are now unexpectedly alive and well.
“Whenever there’s a game, I’ll be ready to go now.
“It’s funny how it works for some boys, for others it’s a bit different.
“In my case obviously it just allowed me to take a bit more of my time and make sure I ticked all the boxes.”
Daily communication with the team’s training and medical staff helped fast track Tuttle’s final stages of rehab and have the 24-year-old ready to hit the ground running upon the clubs return to action.
“I was heavily in contact with the physio and strength and conditioning staff, ticking off the back end of my rehab program and keeping accountable each day.
“Liam Robinson and Shane Lehane did a really great job in keeping me in check and communicating with me each day, so they really helped out a lot during that isolation period.
"That’s certainly a positive to take out from this situation and something that not only myself but the rest of the group is excited for - to see some games kick off once again and just getting back out there with each other.
During his time away from the game, Tuttle says he missed the on-field camaraderie with his teammates and the euphoric feeling of celebrating a big win in the locker room after a hard weeks training.
“The biggest thing I missed the most, was being around the training group and the sheds after, whether after training or after a game.
“The best time for a footy player is after snagging a big win and being able to crack open a tinny with your teammates, who you’ve worked together with so hard all week.
“I think it’s those moments with your teammates in the sheds have been the what I’ve missed the most and the thing I’m definitely looking forward to the most in the next couple of weeks.”