Hampshire all-rounder Dimitri Mascarenhas is relieved to have recovered from his Archilles injury after playing in Sunday's loss to Durham in the CB40.
The 33-year-old suffered the injury in March 2010 and was expected to be sidelined until mid-summer.
"I wasn't expecting to be playing now, so it's all a bonus," Mascarenhas told BBC Radio Solent.
"We just got to see how it goes and take it one step at a time, it's just good to be playing again."
Mascarenhas played in the second team before his return to the starting line-up and will feature in Friday's CB40 game against Northamptonshire at the Rose Bowl.
However, the England all-rounder admits that rediscovering his form will be a challenge.
"Playing in the first team is totally different to the second team," he said.
"In the second team it's a case of going through the motions, having a hit and having a bowl, standing in the field and getting my Archilles used to everything again.
"Once you get out into the first team it's not just a case having a go, it's full on.
"You play to win and that's what we get paid for and you've got to perform everytime you go out there."