DEFENDER Grant Hall has confessed that last season was a ‘nightmare’ for him and now can’t wait for a fresh beginning in six weeks’ time.
The 26-year-old was plagued by tendonitis in his knee for much of the campaign and was restricted to just five matches in all competitions last season.
In February he underwent surgery on the problem, which he’s now recovering from, and working hard at Harlington to be ready for the start of next term.
Speaking to www.qpr.co.uk, Hall expressed his desire to get back on the pitch and put this season behind him.
“I just want to be fully fit for pre-season. It’s been a nightmare year for me personally and one I want to forget quickly,” admitted Hall.
He continued: “It’s a strange feeling being in the gym on my own but obviously I’ve got to work hard for the summer. I know there’s going to be a lot of questions for me to answer regarding my fitness so it’s for me to prove it really.
“It’s been a slow process. It’s a weird thing to say but I’m really looking forward to pre-season! I played like four games last season and it’s been so long since I’ve been out. I don’t mind the hard work, I need to get fully fit and I need a full pre-season in front of me so I can go into the season flying, that’s my aim.”
Having performed well against Millwall last December, it was initially thought that Hall could prolong having surgery until the end of the season.
“I was playing at 70 percent and it just got to that point where it wasn’t good enough,” explained Hall.
“You can’t expect to play at the highest level in the Championship at 70 percent – it’s just not enough, I had the op and it was successful.
“With regards to how my knee feels now? Well, it’s great so far! When I was doing gym work before the operation I was still getting pain during exercises, which I haven’t had so far, but the real test for me is when I’ll go outside on the grass.
“I went back to see the surgeon and he’s very happy with how it went – I saw him twice and he’s happy for me to start running in the next couple of weeks.
"I’m hoping that will then be it for me, I know I have said that before but I feel like before I was playing within myself a bit. I’ve done my strength work, which I’ve got another week off. The knee feels really good so I will start running on the treadmill next week, with the view of being outside in the next couple of weeks."
Hall says the pain he has suffered both mentally and physically have left him feeling ‘depressed’ but now wants to recapture the form that led to him being voted the Supporters' Player of the Year in 2016.
“It’s been difficult, there have been times when I have had to stay away because mentally it’s been tough. Not just physically but the mental side of not being able to play with the boys and seeing them out there. It’s been really tough, I’ve had some really bad days.
“I’ve gone home and felt a bit depressed. Its football and that happens to a lot of people. You’ve just got to take it and bounce back from it.
“I feel like it’s when I first signed and I’ve got a point to prove again – I’m looking forward to it.”