It’s been a long road back to competitive football for the Sunshine Coast’s Lily Postlethwaite since she sustained an unfortunate ACL injury back in Round 4 last year.

Despite spending more than a year on the sidelines, the midfielder hasn’t missed a beat to emerge as a dominating force in the engine room for the Maroochydore Roos QAFLW side.

Making her long-awaited return to competitive football in back in March, the Lions Academy product wasted no time in asserting her position as one of the State League’s best midfielders.

Notching up an impressive 37 disposals and four touches in her first outing since the injury, Postlethwaite looked right at home on the field and was named QAFLW Player of the round.

02:22 Mins
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Lily Postlethwaite's ACL Recovery

It's been a long time on the sidelines for Lily Postlethwaite after rupturing her ACL at the start of 2021. Now she's back, fitter and stronger than ever, and ready to tackle AFLW Season 7.

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A standout performance in Round 9 against Bond University saw the silky Lion go one better, recording 39 possessions, 22 contested, eight inside 50s and seven clearances to be among Maroochydore’s best on ground.

The 20-year-old is clearly relishing every moment back out on the footy field.

“It’s honestly been so much fun being back around the girls at the Roos, I’m absolutely loving it,” Postlewaite said.

“Even in pre-season here at the Lions it’s amazing not to be on that reconditioning list, you’re in amongst it and it’s so good.

“As challenging as pre-season can be, I’m just really excited and grateful to be able to get out there each week and do everything.

“It’s something you would never want anyone to go through, but once you go through it you really try and take positives out of it.

“I think it’s made me a better athlete coming out the other side of it.”

Her standout performances in the QAFLW are something that High Performance Manager Matthew Green attributes to Postlethwaite’s dedication and work ethic during her rehab.

“Her dedication to her rehab and the way she has immersed herself in the process has been second to none,” Green said.

“She made herself a better athlete and a better player as a result, and we’re seeing her reap the rewards of her hard work in the QAFLW.

“She’s really taken this as an opportunity to find the positives in a tough situation and has come out the other side better for it.”