Jacques O’Neill has become one of the most impressive young stars in Super League in recent seasons.
He enjoyed a breakthrough season in 2020 and, whilst 2021 was not his most consistent due to injury, he still commands the respect of his older peers with an unrelenting determination to mix it with the bigger boys.
However, O’Neill has now spoken out about the injury that kept him out for a long period of time last season.
The Tigers Academy graduate spoke to castlefordtigers.com and began by detailing the rehabilitation work he is doing and what his road ahead looks like in terms of recovery.
“The operation all went well down in London. I had to have my hamstring re-attached and at the moment I am just resting at the minute really, just doing a bit of rehab every day.
“I am not doing too much just to let it heal, I’m just taking every day as it comes at the minute. I have been practicing extending my knee and making sure I can do that properly and then I got my leg brace off.
“I was on crutches and moving forward hopefully I can start doing a bit more.”
Being forced to sit on the side lines during a season is never easy for a player, but O’Neill explained that his colleagues in the Tigers camp kept his spirits high when he began rehab work.
“I don’t know how many of the boys have messaged me. People were ringing me that much that I wasn’t able to answer.
“All the boys texting me asking if everything is alright and that makes you feel good when you are a bit down.”
Last term was a trying period for O’Neill, with the 22-year-old making six appearances during an injury disturbed season, although Jacques is relishing the opportunity of being part of Lee Radford’s new era.
“It wasn’t the best season for me personally and I didn’t really feel part of it last year because of my injuries. I only played a few games and picked up four injuries, so it was tough.
“To watch the boys go out at Wembley was good for them and that drove me a bit more to get back for next year. I am ready to go, and I just can’t wait to be part of it again.
“It is exciting with Radders coming in with Andy Last and Danny Wilson, it is real good times at the minute.”