He'd pinched a nerve in his back last Thursday and Brendan Fevola was in no great shape to make his much-publicised cameo appearance for the Sandown Cobras.
He could barely walk, let alone run.
But on the Fev show had to go, and the colourful former AFL spearhead took his place in the Sandown team against Lyndale last Saturday in front of what club long-tooths said was the biggest crowd seen at Edinburgh Reserve.
And despite his back problems Fevola conjured a fairytale finish to the match. His eighth goal with two minutes left put the Cobras two points in front and it held on for its first victory of the season, by four points.