Dom Tyson is hoping to make a difference now he's back from injury
MIDFIELDER Dom Tyson admits it is getting tough heading into the Greater Western Sydney dressing rooms at the end of yet another loss.
Thankfully, he should soon be able to do his part to help out, having made a successful return from knee surgery on Saturday.
The third pick in the 2011 NAB AFL Draft, Tyson ruptured his posterior cruciate ligament during a training drill in December.
Following a carefully monitored rehab program, he made it through about 60 per cent of the reserves' loss to Gold Coast on Saturday unscathed.
"You don't get used to losing, but you forget how good a win feels," Tyson told AFL.com.au.
"That's something we have to continually remind ourselves and play for.
"You come to the rooms after games and it's not something you want to be part of, the mood, you want to be up and about and enjoying winning.
"That's what we're all here for, winning games, and the sooner the better."
Medically cleared to play three weeks ago, Tyson then underwent a gruelling training regime to ensure he had enough base fitness to run out games.
Five months out was the longest period Tyson, who turns 20 next month, had ever been sidelined.
"I was a bit rusty early," he said.
"But I felt confident knowing I'd done my rehab and been medically cleared by the physio and the surgeons.
"There were just the general nerves being back playing.
"We planned for 50 per cent game time, but things were tracking well enough so we pushed it to 60.
"I was happy with that. Now I'm just looking to build for next week and the week after."
Tyson injured his knee in a simple tackling drill with teammate Devon Smith.
He admits he momentarily held his breath when he was involved in a similar collision at the weekend.
"I got tackled once in a similar tackle to how I did it, and I sort of (worried) for a second, but then I was straight up and it was fine," he said.
"It was really positive for my mindset going into games.
"If you know you've done the rehab and everyone's happy with it, you shouldn't have anything to worry about."
Tyson is also grateful the timing of his injury means he still has plenty of time to contribute this season.
"Someone like Jonny Patton was three games in (when he injured his knee) and now it's his season," he said.
"When he comes back fit it'll be the start of pre-season for him.
"It gets tougher when you're watching the boys play and lose. Obviously you want to be out there helping.
"But it went pretty quickly."
James Dampney is a reporter for AFL.com.au. Follow him on Twitter: @AFL_JD