Preston North End's Greg Cunningham happy to be back in the thick of it after serious injury

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Greg Cunningham is glad to be back in the thick of it after missing the final two months of last season through injury.

The 32-year-old suffered a serious hamstring injury that required surgery during the 4-0 defeat to Middlesbrough in March.

But he’s been in amongst it from day one of pre-season, which started on Monday for Ryan Lowe’s men, and he’s already looking forward to Saturday’s opener against Bamber Bridge.

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He told the Lancashire Post: “Regardless, when you come back for pre-season you're expecting the worst. It's been quite calculated, it's been a tough week but it's one where we've been able to get the balls out. It's not just been stopwatches and running.

Preston North End's Greg Cunningham looks onPreston North End's Greg Cunningham looks on
Preston North End's Greg Cunningham looks on

"We've been incorporating a lot of our fitness with the ball and it's a bit of a distraction rather than just running around the pitch. It's been great, it's been positive. It's been nice to get in amongst it with the boys and get us all back together. Start off on day one as we mean to go on.

“We've got a game against Bamber Bridge and then we head to Spain for a week which will be a nice change of scenery, then we're back in the games.

"Once those pre-season games come and you're topping up your minutes you can feel that you're nearly there and you're ready for the first game of the season against Bristol City.

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"Once you get the first couple of weeks out of the way you get your base and you can see the light at the end of the tunnel.”

Cunningham’s time off over the summer was different to most, as he was focused on making sure he was coming back fit and ready to contribute.

After a bit of discussion with the medical department at Euxton a plan of action was put together for the defender and he’s been pleased with the progress he’s made.

He said: “It was grand, I was in and out, like. I stayed on for a while once the season was over and kind of discussed with Matt Jackson (physio) what I had on over the summer. My brother and my friend got married so I had a bit of downtime.

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"I did my fitness and some of my rehab at home and then I came back in a few weeks before pre-season started just to tick off the final boxes.

"It went very smoothly. I was very happy with how it went. I thank the medical department for that and I feel really good now. I'm ready to go now, ready to play and ready to hit the ground running this pre-season.