BRISBANE defender Noah Answerth is ready to hit day one of pre-season training after groin problems ruined his past 12 months.

Answerth first suffered the injury late in the 2020 season, missing that year's finals series, and did not play a single senior game last season.

Following three failed comebacks in the VFL, the 22-year-old underwent surgery halfway through the year and has slowly made his way back from there.

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"When it first flared up … I thought I'd be out for two weeks and I'd be back for finals," Answerth told lions.com.au.

"I was training all the way up to that prelim, to the point where I was getting carried off and was meant to hit targets and couldn't do it, which was heartbreaking."

Answerth had surgery on both his groins and appendix in the same week, keeping him bed-ridden for 16 days.

Working alongside Brisbane's rehabilitation coordinator Josh Low, Answerth has developed a program that has concentrated on mobility through his back and running "relaxed" at good speeds.

While Cam Rayner and Eric Hipwood – who both ruptured their ACLs this year – will be big inclusions in 2022, so will Answerth, a definite best 22 player with his ability to lock down the opposition's best small forward.

"The approach we've taken has been slow, but I'm nearly back at a point where I can start running again with the group and full train in pre-season and hopefully play some practise matches this year, which is exciting," he said.

"I'm hoping that 2022 is a better year than 2021."

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