THE dull nature of Southend United’s 0-0 draw with Woking could not dampen Ollie Kensdale’s delight at returning to action on Saturday.

The Shrimpers defender came back into the starting line-up wearing a protective mask after missing the previous five games with a broken nose and eye issues.

And the 23-year-old was pleased to be playing once again.

“I was happy to be back,” said Kensdale.

“The mask doesn’t affect how I play and if anything my headers are actually going a bit further.

“It was fine and I’m just happy to be back.”

Kensdale helped Blues secure a third clean sheet in succession.

But he was made to sweat slightly more than usual!

“You do feel the mask, mainly because of the sweat,” said Kensdale.

“That’s probably the biggest impact of it.

“But I’m happy to be back and if I have to play in it until the end of the season then I’ll do it.

“I just want to play.

“I feel fine and feel good.

“I’m pleased to get through 90 minutes and hopefully I can get more minutes now.”

However, Kensdale admitted his first game back had not been the most eventful.

“I think 0-0 was the only scoreline that game was going to be,” said the centre-back.

“They're always tough to play and they make it hard.

“You know what you're going to get from them and they're probably more aggressive with the press now under the new manager.

“You have to stand up to what they bring and I don't think we did it that well, especially when you compare it to the away game.

“We were first to the second balls that day and then managed to stamp our authority on the game but I don't think we got that today at all.”

And Kensdale knows it would have been hard for those watching to enjoy.

“I can imagine it was a tough one to watch and it was a tough one to play in too,” said Kensdale.

“But we're unbeaten in 10 now and you're not always going to be at your best.

“Of course you want to win those games but taking a point is still a positive.”

However, Kensdale remains eager for Blues to produce an improved performance at Solihull Moors on Tuesday night.

“We want to play our way,” said Kensdale.

“The gaffer wants us to play a certain way and stamp our authority on games.

“If we do that then it’s an entertaining watch and it breeds results.

“If we get the performances right then results will follow.”