The recruitment of All Australian defender Nick Malceski was seen as a big win for the Gold Coast SUNS at the end of 2014.
The former Swans premiership player brought 10 years experience to Metricon Stadium and a desire to lead the SUNS into their next phase, including finals football.
Unfortunately, a niggling knee injury greatly hampered Malceski’s maiden season at the SUNS.
“Nick to his credit really took full responsibly for his form,” senior coach Rodney Eade told SEN Breakfast duo Frank and Ox.
READ: May raves about Malceski's leadership
“He had a bit of a cyst at the back of his knee which hampered him to a degree.
“And I think he was pushing himself too much, and at times his knee was sore and he’s pushed through that and that obviously was a detriment of his performance.”
During his 16 games in 2015, Malceski provided rebound from the back half with his famous left foot, a crowning moment of which was his 25 disposals against Greater Western Sydney in round 16.
Looking towards season 2016, Eade is confident Malceski has returned to full fitness thanks to the club’s restructured high performance program and looks set to hit the 200-game milestone.
“With a new high performance manager (Justin Cordy) guiding the way our program is going, I suppose there is more specificity around what we do, and I think Nick’s really benefited from that,” he said.
READ: Individualised training here to stay
“His pre-season has been terrific so it’s going to be like a new recruit.”