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Happy days for fit-again Cunningham

Ross Cunningham always believed he could make his mark in the Hamilton team once his fitness issues were resolved.

But even he is considering revising his pre-season targets after hitting four goals across his first two starts for the club.

The forward underwent surgery in March to correct a fundamental ankle problem and has hit the ground running in the Betfred Cup.

The 21-year-old had previously made 15 substitute appearances for Accies and enjoyed a loan spell at Forfar last season where he discovered what it means to be playing for your livelihood.

Now he is determined to put his new physical and mental strength into the Ladbrokes Premiership season ahead of Saturday’s opener at Ross County.

Cunningham said: “I’ve had a bad couple of years with injuries but I got to the root of the problem in March and I feel fully fit and ready for the season to start.

“I had injury problems since I was 16, my ankles kept breaking down and I never really found out why.

“I went for a scan at the start of March and it showed my ankle hadn’t fully joined together. That was the reason both kept breaking down. I hadn’t grown properly.

“The operation fixed all that and has definitely helped me.

“When I came back from injuries before, I never really came back fully fit and that was down to myself being eager to play and impress. Now I am fully fit I can feel the full benefits. Every time I get to play I am buzzing.

“When you’re injured it’s a tough time but I believe I’m a good player so I thought if I could get fully fit I could make my mark on this team. Thankfully I am fully fit now so I just have to keep going.

“I think I have matured a lot over the last two years as a person and got better as a player. So hopefully I can keep working hard and keep my place in the team and play as many games as possible.

“I have never really been one to set myself targets but before we came back I set myself a target of getting 15 starts for the season.

“But obviously I have scored a few goals so I maybe need to try and change those targets.”