While he and his team-mates were on the wrong end of a 0-11 loss, Vodafone Warriors centre Gerard Beale found reason for personal satisfaction when he debuted for the club in Saturday's 10th-round Intrust Super Premiership match against Western Suburbs at Mount Smart Stadium.
Among a slew of new signings for 2018, the 27-year-old Beale had been sidelined for more than six months after breaking his leg in the Kiwis' opening match of the Rugby League World Cup against Toa Samoa at Mount Smart Stadium on October 28.
Enduring a painstaking rehab programme, he was finally able to pull on a Vodafone Warriors jersey for the first time yesterday as he began his campaign to push for NRL selection.
The team's overall performance didn't meet expectations but Beale had the satisfaction of coming through 80 minutes unscathed.
After the match he said he hadn't had any issues with the injury and was simply pleased to be back playing football after so long out of action.
He made 105 runs from 14 runs (including three dummy half runs) while he had 12 tackles without a miss.