SINGAPORE - They are bruised, battered and perhaps even close to a burnout, but when the LionsXII came together again last evening, pain did not matter.
Domestic football returns after a two-week break for international fixtures, which has seen 13 LionsXII players picking up knocks while donning national colours.
V Sundramooorthy's charges have vowed to soldier on, in what is a must-win Malaysia Cup Group D fixture against Sarawak at the Jalan Besar Stadium on Wednesday.
They will have one big boost - the return of inspirational skipper Shahril Ishak.
It was feared that a gluteus injury may well have ended the season of the 29-year-old forward, but, after coming through a one-hour training session at the Geylang field yesterday with 12 LionsXII players, Shahril looks set to play some part on Wednesday.
"Scans have shown that my muscles are healing well, and I took full part in training. I'm hopeful that I will be able to play," said Shahril who revealed that doctors used platelet-rich plasma - it stimulates healing of soft tissue and bone - to treat him.
"We've got several players who are carrying knocks, but we have to put aside any thought of pain, injury or worry about who will or will not play.
"There's nothing to say about this game against Sarawak - except that we have to go out there and win it," he added.
The reigning Malaysian Super League champions are third in Group D on four points, three points behind joint-leaders Perak and Sarawak.