Drew Talbot played 45 minutes in Saturday’s final pre-season friendly away at Hartlepool United, which came as somewhat of a surprise to the popular defender.
The right-back has battled through serious injury over the past two seasons, but came through his first half of pre-season football without any ill-effects.
Talbot told PlayerHD that he was happy to get some much-needed game time. “I had been fit for a few weeks, but then I felt my hamstring. Mal [Purchase] has had me working really had in the gym and while I was only supposed to play 30 minutes, me being me I wanted a little bit longer and they [the coaches] agreed to it, so it’s pleasing”
“Right now I could fall asleep, you can do as much running as you want but when it comes to the football it’s a different kettle of fish. I’m short of fitness but I know how to get myself through games these days with a bit of experience, so if the gaffer wants to call for me against my hometown Barnsley then I’m ready to go."
Talbot says he has been working hard in the gym with Chesterfield’s coaches, but admitted that he wasn't sure if he would overcome his groin and hamstring injuries and play for the Spireites again after last season.
“To be honest I didn’t think I’d be coming back," he said. "I went away and the gaffer spoke to me and he reiterated that he tried to sign me a couple of times, it was important for me to know that he wanted me here.
“I’m a big believer that if you’re happy where you are then the grass isn’t always greener on the other side and I wanted to repay Chesterfield for sticking with me.
"I’ve had two years of on and off injuries so I wanted to find my feet again and have a good season this year and see where it takes me.”
The Spireites won Saturday's game 1-0 courtesy of a Sam Morsy strike 15 minutes from time, a win that makes it five pre-season wins from six in pre-season.
It's a record which Talbot believes will give the side great confidence going into the season opener against Barnsley at the Proact Stadium this coming weekend.
“Winning just brings confidence," he said. "The gaffer reiterated in there that we already have a good squad, he’s had to let people go but that’s the way football works. He’s mentioned he’s bringing a few players in so we look forward to seeing who they are.
“Especially me as a Barnsley lad it’s the first fixture I look for. I was a little bit worried this year that I wouldn’t make it but I’ve worked hard to get myself in this position so if the gaffer wants me I’m ready to go.”