Preston duo Declan Rudd and Patrick Bauer have inspired each other back to full fitness
Preston North End goalkeeper Declan Rudd has spoken of how he and Patrick Bauer spurred one another on to recovery from serious injuries.
The pair are room-mates on away trips and for the second half of last season spent hours together in the gym doing rehab work after operations.
Rudd tore knee cartilage which lodged in his kneecap, suffering the injury during a training sessions in January.
Centre-half Bauer tore his Achilles tendon last December in the 3-2 win at Bournemouth.
Both have returned to action during pre-season having worked over the summer break to get back fit.
Rudd said: “Pat and myself spent every day in the gym doing our rehab.
“We’d push ourselves along, kept each other going when we had a down day.
“We were in a similar situation and knew that at times coming back from a long time out was tough.
“To see Pat back out there on the pitch has been brilliant, we both know how much we put into our rehab.
“At Celtic, Pat came on in the second half and helped us keep the clean sheet. To have him playing in the defence in front of me was brilliant.”
After Rudd was injured early in January, North End moved to secure the services of Daniel Iversen on loan from Leicester City.
Iversen played the 23 remaining Championship games and PNE are in the process of bringing him back to Deepdale.
A season-long loan deal has been struck with the Foxes but it is likely to be later in the month before the Dane is back in Preston
Iversen reported for pre-season training at Leicester last week, with him needed there until the Premier League club’s international keepers are back.
Rudd is likely to back in goal at Accrington today, after Connor Ripley and Mat Hudson played a half each against Bolton in midweek.
He was happy with his clean sheet in the 1-0 win at against Celtic last weekend, his first 90 minutes since the injury.
He made two notable saves, one in the first half from David Turnbull and then to deny Ewan Henderson a late equaliser. In some post-match ribbing in the dressing room, Rudd’s team-mates felt that 89th-minute save was one for the cameras.
“The lads gave me a bit of stick about that one,” said Rudd, 30, with a smile.
“I couldn’t move my feet across because my legs had gone, so I had to throw myself at it.
“In the first half I saved one with my feet, the shot came through someone’s legs and I only saw it late. Sometimes you have to react like that.”
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