It took him a little longer than expected to make his senior level return.
But Jordan Thorniley acquitted himself reasonably well in the Easter Monday victory away to relegation-haunted Sunderland.
The young centre-half was thrown straight in at the deep end after Morgan Fox was withdrawn in the eighth minute due to a hamstring problem.
It was Thorniley’s first run-out since he was forced off against Millwall on February 20 because of concussion and bruising to his face.
Manager Jos Luhukay thought Thorniley would only be out of action for a couple of weeks but he missed over a month of football.
Thorniley resumed first-team training during the international break and also featured in the Under-23s hard-fought win at Burnley last month.
The defender, who spent time on loan at Accrington Stanley earlier this season, looked a tad rusty in the early stages versus Sunderland but improved as the contest wore on.
Luhukay told The Star: “I’m happy with the boy. He did a good job and helped give us stability. Jordan is a good character and I think he got more confident the longer the game went on.”
With Fox ruled out for the rest of the season, Thorniley could be vying with Daniel Pudil for a starting spot when Wednesday host Fulham this weekend. Pudil hurt his hamstring against Preston North End but Luhukay has refused to rule out the possibility of him being available for selection on Saturday.
“When a player is not 100 per cent, we must not let them play and that’s why we gave Daniel a rest,” he said. “I hope Daniel can play on Saturday.”