RETURNING Carlton youngster Tom Williamson relished being back amongst the action as he put a lengthy injury layoff behind him on the weekend.

Williamson featured for the Northern Blues in Saturday’s match against Box Hill, after a back injury interrupted his start to the year.

It was Williamson’s first hit-out of the year since featuring in Carlton’s AFLX side over three months ago.

Speaking post-match, Williamson said he was delighted to return to the fold following a frustrating start to his 2018.

“It was really good, just awesome to get out there and get a feel for footy again,” Williamson said.

“Obviously it wasn’t the result we were after as a team, but it was a positive just being out there again from my end.”

Playing the first half as he returned on limited game-time, Williamson adapted well to the pace of the game from the outset.

The rebounding defender admitted there were “a few nerves” heading into the match.

“I only played a half and I pulled up well: a few early touches definitely helped me settle into things and relaxed me given I hadn’t played for such a long time,” Williamson said.

After registering 15 senior games in an impressive debut season last year, Williamson said he was hopeful of working his way back to add to his AFL tally in the coming weeks.

Building the match fitness up will be a big thing for me, I was blowing a little bit early,” Williamson said. 

“I’ll work it through with the coaches over the next week and see whatever is the best fit from here.”

Tom Williamson gets in the thick of the action during his return from injury. (Photo: Tim Murdoch)

The weekend also marked Williamson’s VFL debut, as another Tom recorded a milestone game for the Northern Blues. 

The young Blue said featuring in the Northern captain’s milestone game was an experience he loved being part of.

“It was my first game under Tom Wilson but I learnt pretty quickly that he’s a really good leader, well-respected and speaks very well amongst the group,” Williamson said. 

“It was disappointing that we couldn’t get the result but hopefully we fought it out in the spirit and manner that he would’ve liked.”

The Northern Blues return to Ikon Park for the first time in 2018 this weekend when they take on Essendon. The game begins at 1pm.