Long wait over for Hutchison
St George Illawarra will get playmaker Drew Hutchison back this weekend, after he finally got medical clearance to play for the first time this season.
Hutchison ruptured his ACL early in pre-season, being hurt in a routine training session a week before Christmas last year.
He's undergone a gruelling eight months of rehab but the 22-year-old is fit to return to action.
Every game you play you want it to be in the top grade.Drew Hutchison
His first game back will be in the Intrust Super Premiership for Illawarra on Saturday.
The Albion Park junior says even when he first suffered the injury, he set a goal of playing again by the end of this season.
"At the start we thought it might have been a whole year but the more I was able to train the more belief around the club I could get back," he added.
Whether he will return to first-grade action for the Dragons before the end of regular season is still up in the air.
Hutchison will be crossing his fingers he can make that deadline, as the club are in a battle to make the NRL finals after losing their past two games and dropping out of the top eight.
"Every game you play you want it to be in the top grade and for me it's no different coming back from injury or 20 games into a season, you always want to push for a top spot," he said.
"I've always thought to myself I could [play in the NRL] as the body gets older because it gets used to it. I thought physically I was up to it until the injury."
Hutchison, who has only played four NRL games so far, kicked the winning field goal for Illawarra last year in the Intrust Super Premiership NSW grand final.
St George Illawarra are 1.36 to finish in the top eight.
The Dragons are 1.36 to win their next game against Gold Coast, who are 3.25.
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