Last month, AFC Bournemouth left-back Rhoys Wiggins announced his retirement from professional football at the age of 30.
It saw the end of a career of a player that had once upon a time promised much, spanning four spells at Dean Court over nine years.
In that time AFC Bournemouth had avoided almost oblivion by avoiding relegation to non-league football and won promotion from the fourth tier of English football.
That period of the clubs history set the stage for the Cherries climb up the football pyramid.
His first move to the south coast came on loan from Crystal Palace in January 2009.
He made 13 appearances in League Two as the Cherries achieved the greatest escape, avoiding relegation from the fourth tier of English football despite a seventeen point deduction at the start of the campaign.
Wiggins joined Norwich City at the end of the campaign, but after failing to make a league appearance he returned to the Cherries for a second loan spell on an emergency loan deal in January 2010.
He made 19 appearances as AFC Bournemouth won promotion from League Two.
Wiggins then joined the Cherries on a permanent basis in the summer, but after 40 appearances he reportedly forced a move to Charlton Athletic in July 2011.
He would go on to make over 130 appearances for both Charlton and Sheffield Wednesday before he returned to AFC Bournemouth for a fourth spell when the Cherries and Sheffield Wednesday agreed an undisclosed fee in the region of £200,000 on 1st February 2016.
He would never make an appearance and six months later he joined Championship side Birmingham City on a half-season loan deal on August transfer deadline day but failed to make an appearance until October.
Then on only his second appearance and first start, he suffered the knee injury, which would eventually end his career.
He underwent an operation shortly after suffering the injury and had a second operation was required in April 2017 as Wiggins had been unable to straighten his leg.
It would be the first of many complications which unfortunately would force Wiggins to announce his premature retirement last month.
Wiggins also revealed that a freak accident saw him suffer a fractured skull.
In the end, Wiggins made 72 appearances for AFC Bournemouth, with his last being made in May 2011, when the Cherries lost the League One Play-Off Semi-Final to Huddersfield Town under former manager Lee Bradbury.
He told afcb.co.uk…
“It’s not been easy since the injury. I’ve had three operations, along with countless injections and drainages of the knee.
“A lot of people are also unaware that I had an accident after my first operation and sustained a fractured skull.
“This was, and has been, the most challenging time of my life. I have not only had to deal with the injury, operations and the other freak accident, but I have also found out at the end of a lot of hard work from everyone involved that it was not meant to be, and I would have to give up on my dream once and for all.
“I’m absolutely gutted on a number of levels. – click here to read more of his comments.
Birmingham fan here and we also seen the news about this and it’s such a shame for the lad. As a suffering Season Ticket holder at Blues, I was there on the game he picked up his injury and it looked a bad one from the first minute it happened, as it happened he was one of the best players on the pitch up until that injury. Was having a great game especially again that mob and we thought we finally had some competition for the Left Back spot. Wish him all the success in what he chooses to do next. – Join the conversation, click here.