David Templeton: Hamilton reap rewards from gamble on winger

The 28-year-old winger has picked up November's Premiership player of the month award.

This time two years ago David Templeton was in a dark place.

His career looked to be in tatters, his knee was in a similarly bad state and he could see no light at the end of the tunnel.

After an innocuous challenge during a Championship win over St Mirren in August 2015, Rangers substitute Templeton suffered a devastating injury.

Doctors struggled to solve the issue with his knee to the point the Scottish winger contemplated hanging up his boots at the age of 27.

A desperate trip to a London surgeon finally found the problem, a separate, previously unidentified tear, rescued his career and got him back on the long journey to recovery.

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Hope was restored but he had to battle through the difficult journey alone after being released by Rangers, forcing himself to go to the gym day by day before he could even afford to find himself a new team.

Manager Martin Canning says Hamilton Accies' decision to sign the 28-year-old in March, ending his year and a half wait to play football again, was a gamble. It is a gamble that has paid off handsomely.

'It's fantastic for him. He's been in a dark place with injury and he's come through that and been recognised as the top player in the league for the month.'
Martin Canning on David Templeton

The chances of Templeton seeing himself holding a piece of silverware aloft before 2017 was over were no doubt few and far between.

As the pair showed off their respective Premiership manager and player of the month awards on Wednesday, his represented the end of a long struggle.

"It was difficult, I think I went ten months without playing football," Templeton told STV Sport.

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"It was difficult sitting in the house and trying to go to the gym myself, not being in and around a team - the banter with the boys. It's just nice to have that feeling again and playing football."

Hamilton did not lose a game in November, beating Rangers and drawing with Aberdeen and Hibernian.

Templeton proved to be pivotal, scoring two goals along the way.

Canning could not be happier for his creative winger.

He said: "It's fantastic for him. He's been in a dark place with injury and he's come through that and been recognised as the top player in the league for the month.

"He's put a lot of hard work in to get to that point so has the club in terms of getting him to there. It's great for everyone Temps is being recognised and great for the team, what he's producing on the pitch as well.

"It was a little bit of a risk given he hadn't played football in a long time but I met him for a coffee before he signed and straight away on meeting him you could tell he was focused and desperate for another opportunity to get back playing again.

"Thankfully for us, and for Temps, the gamble has paid off if you look at it that way. He's back to playing at a high level again and scoring goals in the Premiership."

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