Huke eyeing long awaited return

After spending a frustrating four months on the sidelines, Central Coast Mariners utility Shane Huke is finally back and available for selection, for this Sunday’s Round 10 Hyundai A-League clash against North Queensland Fury.

After spending a frustrating four months on the sidelines, Central Coast Mariners utility Shane Huke is finally back and available for selection, for this Sunday-s Round 10 Hyundai A-League clash against North Queensland Fury.

Ironically, Huke last appeared in the yellow and navy against Sunday-s opponent, in a pre-season trial match at Rockhampton-s Jardine Park back in June.

Since then, the former Dagenham and Redbridge and Peterborough United man has undergone an intense rehabilitation period to repair a tendon injury in his left knee, and after impressing at training, feels he-s ready for a return to competitive action.

"It-s been a while, since May I-ve been out, but I feel good now, and hopefully I-ll get back into it.

"I-m still getting there, still working on it and there are still a few things I need to do to strengthen up my legs, but it-s getting there," Huke said.

Originally signed solely for the Central Coast-s inaugural Asian Champions League campaign, Huke impressed enough to earn himself a contract for version five of the Hyundai A-League, only to be frustratingly cut down early in pre-season preparations.

"Especially getting a long term injury, it-s always a bad thing, but I-m glad if it was going to happen, at least it was at the start of the season where I could get it seen to throughout pre-season, instead of say, November or December.

"It-s obviously different from training to playing the game, and you-ve also got nerves and things which play a part, but yeah hopefully (I-ll play) because the only way I-m going to get (match) fit is to get a few minutes under my belt, so we-ll see how we go," said Huke.

With Michael McGlinchey and John Hutchinson both on international duty and missing Sunday-s clash, it gives Huke a great chance to be back in the reckoning with Lawrie McKinna being forced into a reshuffle of his midfield.

"There-s two spots available and everyone is fighting for those two spots, so we-ll see how I go," Huke said.

Now back in the reckoning, Huke is in line to make his first competitive appearance for the club since May, in either Tony Walmsley-s National Youth League side as they do battle with the Australian Institute of Sport at Miranda-s Seymour Shaw Park on Saturday, or the following day when Lawrie McKinna-s men do battle with North Queensland Fury at Bluetongue Stadium.

The Central Coast Mariners Westfield W-League team take on Adelaide United at Bluetongue Stadium this Sunday, 10 October at 12:15pm, before the Hyundai A-League side clashes with North Queensland Fury. Gates open at 12:00pm, and the main game kicks off at 3:00pm.

Tickets for this match are available online here or by phoning 132 849.

Mariners Memberships for the Hyundai A-League 2009/10 season are now available online by clicking here or by phoning 1300 767 442.