CHRISTIAN Salem is back in full training after being concussed by a brick during Melbourne's brutal pre-Christmas camp.
Salem and Dees teammate Dom Tyson (patella tendon) were victims of the challenging two-day camp, with Salem suffering his third concussion of 2016.
"It was a bit unfortunate. I ended up knocking myself out on a hike. I got hit in the head with a brick, so it wasn’t ideal," Salem told melbournefc.com.au.
"I remember it all. It was just unfortunate. It hit me in the wrong spot. These things happen.
"I’m fine now. At the time, we were hiking and the bag wasn’t packed right and I went to lift (up the backpack) and it hit me in the back of the head as we were going downhill.
"That didn’t help, but I’m fine now and I was back to full training (on Tuesday) and I’ve pretty much been able to do everything, but the last couple of weeks there wasn’t much contact."
Salem had a wretched run last year, with a thyroid problem also resurfacing mid-year and limiting the classy half-back to just eight senior games.
But the 21-year-old, taken at pick nine in the 2013 NAB AFL Draft, had enjoyed a problem-free pre-season until he was concussed by the brick.
"Before Christmas I didn’t miss a session, so the body’s in good nick and I’m doing a lot more work with the mids this year, so it’s good and hopefully I’ll get up the ground during the season," he said.
"(Last year) was pretty frustrating. The first seven games I played for the season were OK, but not the best. I then got the news on my thyroid and that was having an effect on my game.
"That explains why I wasn’t playing how I wanted to play, but I missed a chunk of the year and it was just unfortunate that happened.
"I’ve got it all under control now, so hopefully I can move forward this year."
Coming off 10 wins last year, the Dees are expected to push for finals for the first time since 2006 this season under rookie senior coach Simon Goodwin.
"He’s been awesome. There is a real good environment down at the club and he’s really good with the players – not only just him, but all of the assistant coaches," Salem said.
"We’ve got Jordie Lewis and Hibbo (Michael Hibberd) in, so they’re great additions and the main thing for us is to get some consistency and get off to a good start to the year.
"We’re all getting along well and we’re all on the same page, so we’re all ready to get stuck into it."