Alex Davies may have been a cornerstone of London Welsh’s promotion to Aviva Premiership Rugby last season, but he admits he feels like a frustrated spectator this time around.
The versatile back, who scored 135 points in 18 league appearances last year, sustained an anterior cruciate ligament problem in the Championship semi-final at Headingley, ruling him out of contention until last weekend’s LV= Cup defeat at home to Saracens.
And for Davies, the end of that lengthy spell on the sidelines could not have come soon enough.
“It was amazing to be back as part of the team, to get out there and play for 20 minutes,” he said. “There was a really nice reception from the crowd as well, which I don’t always notice when I’m out on the pitch, so that was great.
“The result was very disappointing, but it was certainly nice to be out there again and it felt good to be contributing.
“Obviously the injury was really hard to take.
“My operation took place a couple of days before the Championship final and I was hoping to get to the stadium to be with the boys, but unfortunately there were a couple of minor complications that meant I couldn’t be there.
“That was hard, to be sat at home as we got promoted – but I was obviously really happy with the result.”
The Exiles’ troubles this campaign are well documented, with the club yet to register a win in league or cup.
And the 28-year-old utility back admits he has felt powerless in his time out of the side.
“This season has been really tough, and watching games without being able to contribute or help is a frustrating position to be in," Davies added.
“As a professional rugby player you want to play every week, so to not play for six and a half months, I was feeling very frustrated.”
After Sunday’s narrow loss to Saracens, Davies and Welsh must again regroup ahead of this weekend’s LV= Cup tie at Newport Gwent Dragons.
“We have got to build momentum, and we know it is all about the performance at the weekend, because we all need to perform well as a team,” he said.
“Then moving forward hopefully we can pick up some wins to finish the season strongly.
“My aim is to be involved as much as possible and to contribute to the team as much as I can.
“Concentrating on my goalkicking is important as well, starting to score some points again.
“It’s all about trying to pick up a couple of wins, because as a club we want to finish on a high.
“We have had a few close results over the season to this stage, such as the defeat to Harlequins, but then we lost quite heavily in the next match.
“It has been a bit up and down for us, and we have certainly not been as consistent as we would like to be.
“What we want to build is some momentum and confidence, and to be able to express ourselves on the big stage.”
Tickets for this year's LV= Cup Final on 22 March at Franklin's Gardens are now on sale. Click here to snap one up from just £20 for adults, £10 for juniors to see who will win the first silverware of the season.