After two years out of the NRL, which must have felt like 10 years to Ben Ross, the rampant prop forward is back and ready to wreak havoc, as he makes his professional NRL return in the Rabbitohs trial against the Newtown Jets tomorrow.
It was a serious neck injury sustained in Round 1 of the 2009 season whilst Ross was still a Sharks player that resulted in his two year absence from the game.
Whilst Ross signed with the Rabbitohs after that, he was unable to partake in any games in 2010, but he says that he never lost hope that he would one day return to the NRL paddock – now that day has come.
“I never lost sight of what I wanted to achieve and I’ve finally got that day after two years,” Ross said.
“It’s probably a bit longer than what I expected, but (I’m) back to full strength.
“It’s been two long years and I just can’t wait to get back out there and play again.
“We’ve got three trials ahead and I’ll be trying to get as much time as I can in those to prove my worth to Langy (Souths coach John Lang).”
Tomorrow’s trial game will also be the debut of the younger brother of boom English forward Sam Burgess, George Burgess.
Burgess, who is 194cm and 120kg, is bigger than his brother, with the only advantage Burgess having over his younger brother George, is age.
“He looks like he’s the goods, he’s only 18 and plenty of time ahead of him before he really has to hit his straps,” Ross said.
With the younger Burgess and Ross swelling the Rabbitohs pack’s ranks, the stand-in skipper acknowledged Souths had plenty of forward firepower in their arsenal this year.
“It’s probably a good thing for us that we have got some depth,” Ross said.
“In the past we copped a fair few injuries, if that was to happen we know we’ve got a little bit more depth, a bit more back-up in case things do go wrong.”