Riki Flutey hopes to earn an England recall in time for the Six Nations after finally putting his injury nightmare behind him.
The Wasps centre missed most of last season due to a shoulder injury and was also ruled out of the November Tests after suffering a torn calf.
His comeback then had to be delayed for another two weeks after a severe bout of the flu left him bed-ridden and unable to walk.
But the 30-year-old made his first start since October in a 33-16 win against Newcastle on Sunday and now thinks he can put himself back in contention for an England call-up.
"I have got a bit of game-time coming up. I am looking forward to next week against Harlequins and hopefully put myself in contention for the Six Nations," Flutey said.
"It's been a while with my calf injury. That took longer than expected. It was in an area of my calf that the medical teams with England and Wasps hadn't seen a tear before.
"It has taken a while but it is good to finally have it right now. The England management have been great. I have had the England physios and doctors coming into Wasps once a week to check on things.
"All I need to do is get on the field and get some game-time and I know that will give me loads of confidence going forward into the Six Nations."
Flutey's last Test appearance came in the 12-10 defeat to France in the 2010 Six Nations, since when England have beaten Australia twice and showed signs of a major improvement.
Shontayne Hape has staked his claim to be England's first choice inside centre during that period but Flutey is ready to challenge him for the No. 12 shirt.
He added: "I am excited to be a part of that. I got excited in the autumn by watching training. The coaches were trying to make it harder than it would be out on the field, in terms of intensity, tempo and fitness-wise.
"You see that going out onto the field and I was excited, hoping to get an opportunity in one of the last two games.
"There are positive signs there with the England team and if I get some game-time I can hopefully push for a place."
Martin Johnson is set to announce his updated 32-man squad for the Six Nations on January 12.