Paddy Ryder has had an excellent return to the AFL after 567 days out of the game.

Ryder (pictured) played his first AFL match after his 12 months suspension incurred while he was at Essendon and responded with 13 possessions and 28 hit outs in Port Adelaides defeat of Sydney on Saturday.

There’s nothing quite like the intensity of an AFL match to test a players fitness and Ryder says while he started to struggle at times, he was happy to get a win in his return to the big time.