For Sam Wright, Saturday night’s win was double delight, with the defender not only getting through his return game unscathed, but also being a part of the resilient win.

After 701 days away from AFL football, Wright was solid in his return, however just getting the four points meant much more to the 27-year-old.

“To be honest, it’s probably one of the most satisfying wins I’ve had,” Wright told North Media.

“It doesn’t get much better than that, I’m sort of lost for words.

“I can’t stop smiling, it’s honestly one of the best feelings I’ve had.

“It’s right up there with winning a final, so it was just good the boys got over the line.”

When it comes to return games, it doesn’t get much tougher than that for Wright.

The slippery conditions meant contested footy was at a premium, and the nail-biting finish gave the players little opportunity to catch their breath.

“To be honest, I was just cooked,” Wright said.

“The first three quarters I felt alright and then I was cooked towards the end.”

One of the most pleasing things for North, was the fact it was its younger players that stood up to the challenge.

Although Higgins and Jacobs had 31 and 29 disposals respectively, it was the likes of Mason Wood, Jed Anderson, Ryan Clarke and Trent Dumont who starred.

“To be honest, it’s probably the younger boys that stood up,” Wright said.

“Mason has had a tough season, but I think what he did speaks for itself.

“I was just impressed with the way the boys rallied around eachother in the tough times.

“With the young group we’ve got at the moment, we’re really playing with confidence and it honestly doesn’t get much harder than that, beating Sydney in Sydney.

“It’s only the start to the year, but it’s a good start.”