Back with a bang - Rotherham United's Jamie Proctor
Jamie Proctor has returned to Rotherham United colours with a bang '“ but the goals were just a mere 'bonus' for the striker.
Proctor made his highly-anticipated return after an almost year-long absence by bagging a brace to secure the Millers’ Carabao Cup progress against Wigan on Tuesday.
The 26-year-old underwent knee surgery for a ruptured cruciate knee ligament just six games into his Rotherham career last season.
There were dark days for the frontman during the arduous rehabilitation process, which was littered with ups and downs.
And after posing Paul Warne with a selection headache ahead of the Leeds game this weekend, he beamed: "In terms of dreaming it’s not even something I’ve thought of [scoring on return], it’s all been about getting back out there, to be honest.
"All I’ve thought about is feeling good out there and coming off the pitch feeling good so to have the goals – it’s a good feeling.
"I’ve felt, I wouldn’t say 100 per cent, but the movements, contact and that sort of stuff I’ve felt good for a couple of weeks now and it’s just been about getting the match minutes.
"The goals are a bonus, I think the two of them I didn’t have much time to think and it was all instinct to be honest.
"You have lots of ups and downs [during recovery], on the high days you think ‘I’ll be back soon, I’ll be out there scoring’ and the low days you think ‘I just can’t see when I’m going to be back out there’.
"It’s a steady process and it’s one you’ve got to take really slow. I have done that and it’s about not getting carried away and taking it slow and dealing with it."
The former Bradford boy looked set to return to the side towards the end of the season before a setback saw him undergo the knife again.
Manager Warne had Proctor lead the team out at Wembley for the play-off final for his mental toughness during the tough time.
And reflecting on the setback, Proctor added: "I couldn’t tell you the exact stage but there was a point last year I felt really good and I was close to training with the lads towards the end of the season and we had another little problem which set me back a bit.
"That was tough for me because I expected to be involved sooner rather than later and it set me back quite a while. As you can see we’re a few months down the line and I’m just coming back now."