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Seriously injured goalkeeper eager to return

RISING FORTUNES: Western Pride goalkeeper Max Davison is happy with his progress, recovering from a broken leg.
RISING FORTUNES: Western Pride goalkeeper Max Davison is happy with his progress, recovering from a broken leg. Chris Simpson

MAX Davison's promising recovery from a serious injury has allowed the talented goalkeeper to add to a string of players who have recommitted to Western Pride next season.

The young shot stopper, who suffered a broken leg late in the season, starts rehabilitation hoping to return to the training paddock next month.

Davison joins experienced names Mitchell Bird, Will McFarlane, Adam Endean, Deloys Tuyishime, Jacob Minett, Nielen Brown and Gabriel Hawash in recommitting to Pride next season.

Five members of Pride's U20 squad which qualified for the grand final have also been confirmed in the senior side.

Young attacker Tyron Paz will be looking to make his first senior appearance after promotion to the top side, where he joins 2018 debutants Aaron Midkiff and Matt Haspels, and the more established duo of Josh Wilson and Alex Parsons.

"A good core of players is definitely what you need for stability and experience,'' Dav-ison said.

"I'm keen to see what next season holds for us.

"The league will be tougher next season but the tougher the better."

Davison has played all of his senior football at Pride, amassing 36 appearances before injury intervened.

Davison said his recovery was going well and he couldn't wait to get back on the field to run around.

"I'm just about to start physiotherapy, once I start that it's full steam ahead," Davison said.

"My leg is not painful at all which is good."

The Townsville-raised player missed Pride's last two regular rounds of the season, plus the semi-final defeat to Olympic, which Pride was leading with 18 minutes remaining.

Davison said it was hard to sit on the sidelines.

"It was frustrating but more upsetting I couldn't be a part of the drama, that I couldn't personally make a difference," he said.

"I thought the team did well, and we were beating Olympic but closing out those big games is something we need to give some attention."

Davison said his teammates could hold their heads high.

"After what happened with injuries and people leaving this season it just shows the amazing job our players did to get into the finals," Davison said.

"This just sums up what Pride is about - working hard for your mates."

Looking forward to next season, Davison said he would love to work hard enough to earn a step up to professional football.

Davison pointed to Dylan Wenzel-Halls as an inspiration for all Pride players after the striker joined Roar during the season.

"Dylan is a hard worker and what we take out (from his move) is you have to work hard and put in that bit extra to make it to the next level," Davison said.

"A good year of football and training, and hopefully I can make it too.

"It would be good to see more A-league clubs sign NPL talent."