Facing Clermont in Saturday's Heineken Cup semi-final, Jacques Burger still holds some pain from last year's exit at this stage.
The Namibian international has been nominated as one of six players on this year's shortlist for the Premiership Player of the Year.
Burger came back from a gruesome knee injury last season and was still in pain as Saracens fought on two fronts at the end of the campaign, when they crashed out of Europe and in the league playoffs.
Despite doubts over his return to full fitness, Burger's comeback has won him plenty of plaudits and Saracens will need him at his bruising, uncompromising best against Clermont.
"I remember this time last year we played Toulon and those were very dark days for me," said Burger.
"I was nowhere near fit enough to play and I had to watch from the sidelines.
"It's amazing to think that a year later I'm in this position, you forget about it, once you're back playing you forget how hard it was.
"A lot of people told me it would be tough getting back, I might not ever get back and even if I did get back I might not be as good as I had been before.
"I was lucky I had a great team that supported me - I'm blessed to be back doing what I love and to be playing in the semi-final of the Heineken Cup is just another dream come true."