ADELAIDE, AUSTRALIA - SEPTEMBER 07: Brodie Smith of the Crows and an emotional Sam Jacobs of the Crows embrace each other as the final siren sounds during the AFL First Qualifying Final match between the Adelaide Crows and the Greater Western Sydney Giants at Adelaide Oval on September 7, 2017 in Adelaide, Australia. (Photo by Michael Willson/AFL Media/Getty Images)

Adelaide defender Brodie Smith will play his first game of 2018 this weekend, as he lines up for the Crows’ SANFL team against Central Districts on Saturday.

Smith, who suffered an ACL injury during the Crows’ 2017 Qualifying Final win over the Giants last September, has been sidelined for the past 10 months, but will now finally find his way back onto a football field.

“I can’t wait. I’m super excited. Later in the week, I’ll get really, really excited,” Smith told afc.com.au.

“I’m actually looking forward to getting out to the SANFL as well, I haven’t played for the Adelaide side in the SANFL.

“I’ve played for the Eagles back in 2012, so get the opportunity to play with a lot of guys on the list that I haven’t played with yet so I’m really looking forward to that.

“Obviously I’ve missed a lot of footy, I just can’t wait to get back out there.

“I’ve trained my arse off now for a long time so to get the reward of playing, it’s really exciting.”

Following the injury, Smith was told to expect a 12-month recovery period, which could have potentially ended his 2018 AFL campaign before it began.

However, Smith told the club’s website he immediately disagreed with the prognosis, and fought hard to return in time to put his hand up for finals footy, should the Crows make it.

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“As soon as I had surgery, the surgeon Will Duncan likes to say 12 months,” Smith said.

“Straight away I just said to him it has to be 11 because obviously the finals coming up and the year we had last year I didn’t want to miss out on finals again.

“I’m still confident we can get there [to Finals] and that’s why I’ve still pushed to come back this week and put my hand up to get back as soon as possible.”