Donegal All-Star defender Frank McGlynn was one of the happiest men in Donegal when he awoke last Friday morning.
He had just completed his first full, no holds barred, training session the night before with his county colleagues in over a month. And Alleluia, there was no reaction. He was feeling fine.
There were no twinges, no soreness and no stiffness; well at least not of the hamstring injury that had sidelined him since 21 minutes into Donegal’s first round victory over Tyrone.
Other limbs and body parts may have been aching and sore from the previous night’s tortuous training session. But most importantly, his main concern, his hamstring, was fine; not a tweak.
All of which means that the man that scored Donegal’s second goal in last July’s Ulster final that finally nailed that second successive Ulster crown is looking good to go against Down again on Sunday next.
“Yeah I’m fit and well again,” said Frank.
“I had my first full training session since the Tyrone game on Thursday night, and I came through it no bother and I’ve had no reaction since.
“It is a matter of getting a number of good sessions in now over the weekend and again on Tuesday night to build up my fitness and to work on my sharpness. I had been doing some light jogging for the last couple of weeks but it isn’t the same; you need to push yourself hard to build up fitness levels and also to convince yourself that the injury has cleared up.”
Frank was a major doubt with a hamstring injury ahead of the quarter-final meeting with Tyrone and it was only an 11th hour decision to include him in the starting line-up against the Red Hands.
“I suffered the injury first in training ahead of the Tyrone game. It was on a Tuesday night, exactly 19 days before the game and I did the rehab and received intensive treatment and returned to training the week before the game and I felt fine and I thought I was right.
“But unfortunately it wasn’t and I tweaked it again early in the game and had to go off after 20 minutes which wasn’t the easiest thing to do given that it was such a big game.”
But Frank has recovered well and has been a little more patient this time around and he has a few extra days to work on his fitness and sharpness ahead of Sunday’s Kingspan Breffni Park showdown.
“Thankfully, time is on my side and fingers crossed now that I don’t suffer any setback or pick up any other knocks between now and Sunday.”
Frank is not only relishing the prospect of returning to action and the white heat of the Ulster championship again but also facing the men from the Mournes, in what is a repeat of last year’s Ulster final. Maybe even hit another match winning goal.