Harrogate Town midfielder Lloyd Kerry raring to go again after spell at FA's St George's Park
Harrogate Town midfielder Lloyd Kerry is back fit and raring to go, aided by a spell down at the FA’s national training centre.
The 31-year-old, who picked up a grade two ankle ligament tear in his team’s 1-0 away defeat to Woking back in August, spent three weeks with St George’s Park’s elite medical team on a residential rehabilitation placement.
And Kerry feels that the treatment he received, courtesy of the Professional Footballers’ Association, speeded up his recovery and has enabled him to return to training sooner than he might have done.
“That time at St George’s Park definitely helped with my recovery,” he said.
“I’m very grateful to the PFA for enabling me go down there. It’s made a huge difference and meant I’ve been able to come back a bit sooner than I would have done.
“The physios down there assessed me when I arrived and said we had to get the ankle moving, so that first week I did a lot of work on loosening it up and trying to increase my mobility.
“From there i just built myself back up. I’ve been able to use the altitude chamber at St George’s Park, something that I wouldn’t have been able to use otherwise, and that’s aided the recovery process.”
Kerry returned to training last Monday and got through the full week without any issues, though he wasn’t included in Town’s match-day 16 for Saturday’s 1-0 home win over Aldershot.
And while he believes he is ready to play if called upon, he doesn’t believe there is any point rushing things.
“The ankle is feeling good. I’ve been back training as normal, full contact, and not had any problems,” he added.
“I had been doing some work on the bike and I’m usually one of the fittest in the group anyway, so I haven’t come back into it feeling too far off the pace.
“You need the short, sharp stuff to really get you up to speed - there’s no substitute for match fitness - but I feel better after a week back in training and I think I’m ready to go now.
“Obviously there’s no need to rush it because the lads are playing so well at the moment and are on this unbeaten run, though I am looking forward to getting back out on the pitch.”
Kerry has had something of a rough deal when it comes to injuries during his time at Wetherby Road, sustaining a double facial fracture in 2016 before rupturing his anterior crucial ligament just six months later.
“I’ve been quite unlucky with injuries in recent years because whenever I’ve had one it’s been quite serious and I’ve been out for long periods,” the ex-Sheffield United and Chesterfield man said.
“It’s hard and it can be quite lonely at times. You don’t feel a part of it. You’re not involved on match-days are kind of on the outside.
“Of course it’s frustrating, but I just think it’s a test of your character. The positive I can take is that when I’ve come back from the last couple of spells out injured I’ve been okay.
“I’ve come back strong. There haven’t been any issues when I’ve got back out on the pitch and I’m hoping that it’s the same again this time around.”