There was a time when Western Force captain Matt Hodgson thought he would never get the chance to play a single game of Super Rugby.

Nine years later, and with 99 Super caps to his name, Hodgson is still thanking his lucky stars as he prepares to become the first player to notch a ton of games for the Force.

Hodgson's career was at the crossroads during the middle of last decade when he suffered a serious knee injury while playing sevens rugby.

That setback followed on from shoulder and ankle reconstructions when a rugby career at the elite level looked beyond Hodgson.


But a dedicated rehab programme got Hodgson back on track, before a meeting with inaugural Force coach John Mitchell gave the young flanker his rugby break.

"I got told I might not play again after a big knee injury in the sevens," Hodgson said. "I just put my head down and tried to focus on rehab.

"I was lucky enough to catch up with John Mitchell in a one-on-one meeting, and I was lucky enough to fill a roster spot at the Force.

"[Back] in 2005 I was happy to get one game. Now to reach 100 games is a big achievement for me."

The milestone looms large but Hodgson's primary focus is on dealing with the Melbourne Rebels on Saturday night at nib Stadium.

"We're looking for them to come out and play an expansive game."