Quitting football was an option for Simon King during the dark days of his injury hell, but he’s delighted to see his determination pay off.
King, pictured, played his last full game for the Gills, before last Saturday’s trip to Port Vale, in the Wembley play-off final in 2009.
A severely damaged ankle left him unable to play the following season and during the next campaign he only made four brief appearances as the injury problems persisted. It tested even his resolve.
"Of course it crossed my mind (to quit) many times," said the 28-year-old. "It’s only human nature to feel like you’ve had enough. I have had a supportive family and the lads have been great since – they’ve kept me going.
"When you have nights like Tuesday and also Saturday, it makes all of that hard work in the gym worthwhile. I had a few games at Plymouth (on loan) and it was a case of waiting for my chance here, being patient and doing the job when I did get a chance."
King helped the Gills to a much-needed clean sheet against Rotherham on Tuesday as he completed a second 90 minutes without complaint.
He said: "In the first half (on Tuesday) I got the ball and felt comfortable. I tried to get forward like the old days. There is still a bit of life in the old legs yet."
King's contract expires this summer and he’s hoping an end to his injury problems have come at the right time. "It is a good time to come into the team," he said. "Hopefully I can prove my worth and prove I am still a good League 2 defender."