Dan Lydiate (far right) made a stunning return to the Welsh jersey against Ireland.
Three weeks ago Dan Lydiate was a day away from returning home empty handed from New Zealand, but now the Dragons back row man is two weeks away fro a possible World Cup winners' medal.
A first-half ankle injury in the pool win over Samoa threatened to end Lydiate's tournament, but the 23-year-old refused to give up on his dream and spent 72 hours icing his injury.
For three days he forwent sleep in order to put an ice pack on his ankle every two hours and the reward was a starting berth in the quarter-final victory over Ireland. No wonder, then, that Wales' 'ice man' shed a few tears at the end of the 22-10 triumph in Wellington.
"It is hard to put into words what it means. There were a few tears and that at the end, but we won't let it go to our heads," said Lydiate.
"We are out here to do a job and, come tomorrow, we have got be getting ready for next weekend. I was gutted to get injured, but it is part and parcel of the game. There was a chance I would be going home, but I tried to do everything in my power for that not to happen.
"I was just so happy to get on the field against Ireland. I did no more than anyone else would have done. It was about being diligent with your icing times and being on time with your physio appointments. Every rugby player would be the same, I guess."
Lydiate's tackle count and close quarter work allowed his fellow young bucks in the Welsh back row, skipper Sam Warburton and Toby Faletau, to do some roaming work and the balance of the Welsh side was back to where it was for the first one and a half games.
He did what head coach Warren Gatland had asked him to do in the dressing room before the game and "empty his tank". He came in for special praise for his efforts as Gatland explained that "he was so tired after the game he couldn't take his shirt off, but he did what we asked."
Next up is a battle against French skipper Thierry Dusautoir and another massive contest as Wales seek to reach their first World Cup final.
"I didn't leave anything in the tank because it was all about getting the result. Every time you put the jersey on that's what you want and we are all just so happy," added Lydiate.
"We had been through the mill pre-season and we backed our conditioning. In the first 40 minutes we defended for our lives and our conditioning really pulled us through.
"The Irish back-row are big, powerful men and it was a case of trying to stop them before they got going. Once they get going the likes of Sean O'Brien and Stephen Ferris take a lot of stopping.
"At half-time it was a case of just keeping going. We had to keep our composure, we kept plugging away and the boys really put their hands up in defence."
Now that he is back in the fold Lydiate can't wait to get back onto the field to make up for lost time. But he knows the stakes have risen since he was last in the side.
"We are in the semi-finals now, it's knockout rugby and we have just got to push on. We've got to get on with it and not get ahead of ourselves," added Lydiate.
"I just wanted to go flat out as long as I could, chuck my body in there, and I got through it, just about. There is a lot of talent within the squad and we've worked hard all summer.
"We are one big, tight unit and we work hard for each other. They called our pool the 'Pool of Death' and I think our conditioning really helped us. We haven't picked up too many injuries and from here on in it's about not leaving anything in the tank."
Angus O'Brien has quickly settled into the Wales Sevens squad after solid performances in Hong Kong and Japan. With two rounds remaining in Glasgow and Twickenham on the World Series, WRU TV's Graeme Gillespie chats to the rising star.
Wales winger Luke Morgan has established himself as one of the deadliest finishers on the Sevens World Series. WRU TV's Graeme Gillespie catches up with him on the eve of this weekend's round in Glasgow.
All roads lead to Cardiff on Sunday for the SSE SWALEC Finals Day at the Millennium Stadium. Cambrian Welfare tackle Ystradgynlais in the Bowl final, Ystrad Rhondda play Newcastle Emlyn in the Plate final while defending champions Pontypridd face Bridgend in the Cup final.
WRU Chief Executive Roger Lewis, Deputy Minister for Culture, Sport and Tourism Ken Skates and WRU Chairman Gareth Davies earlier this week launched a new competition in conjunction with the WRU unveiling its archive room.
Welsh players and management joined Deputy Minister for Sport Ken Skates at the Pierhead Building, Cardiff Bay earlier this week to reveal the Union's pioneering school-club hub initiative has been so successful the project will now almost double the scale of the original project.
The Scarlets, Newport Gwent Dragons, Cardiff Blues and the Ospreys look ahead to Judgement Day III which sees the Blues take on the Ospreys (2.30) and the Dragons tackle the Scarlets (4.45pm) at the Millennium Stadium tomorrow afternoon.
Ystradgynlais and Ynysddu played out a titanic struggle at Taffs Well in the SSE SWALEC Bowl semi-final. At the end of the game neither team could be separated after a 15-15 stalemate but Ystradgynlais go through on try count.
Blues strike first in JD III battle - Newport Gwent Dragons lock Andrew Coombs, WRU referee Dylan Llyr Jones and Cardiff Blues hooker Matthew Rees decide dressing room allocations for Judgement Day III
Wales Under 18 captain Calum Haggett has received a conditional offer to read Biomedical Science at St Anne's College, Oxford. WRU chairman Gareth Davies went to meet Calum and Coleg y Cymoedd Principal Judith Evans to wish him luck in his exams and pass on some of his personal experience.