Derby defender Jay McEveley has returned to action for the reserves just three weeks after his heart stopped on an operating table.
McEveley was about to undergo surgery on a fractured cheekbone last month when he suffered the major scare.
His heart stopped for two minutes and he has since admitted the experience made him sit up and re-evaluate his life.
McEveley is glad to be back on the pitch after turning out for Derby's second string in their 4-1 victory over Sheffield United on Wednesday.
Wearing a mask to protect his cheekbone, the 24-year-old completed the full 90 minutes and is now looking forward to playing in the Championship again.
"It was nice to get back out there after everything that has happened, and it was good to use the mask in a game situation," McEveley told the Derby Telegraph.
"It seemed to protect me well so I am pleased about that. I've trained with it on so I'm used to it.
"It didn't bother me, apart from one time I went up for a header and it slipped off a bit.
"Overall, it seemed steady and there's no reason why I can't play in a Championship match with it on."