James Bolton enjoyed his return to the Pompey side against Crawley in the Leasing.com Trophy.
The June signing had been out of action since getting kicked on the ankle by former Shrewsbury team-mate Shaun Whalley on the opening day of the campaign.
His injury – which followed a spell on the sidelines earlier in the summer – took longer than hoped to heal, but the right-back played the full 90 minutes of a group stage contest at Fratton Park.
Brett Pitman scored the only goal to ensure it was a winning return and Bolton was pleased to be back in action.
He said: “It’s been very frustrating for me. I thought I’d turned the corner after pre-season and then got the knock at Shrewsbury.
“I was devastated and knew straight away that it was a bad one – and we had no subs left, so I had to carry on.
"There was a bit of cramp towards the end, which is to be expected when you haven’t played for a long time."
“You want to be flying when you join a new club, although you have to take these things in football and try to get over it.
“But I just wasn’t able to shake that off, so it’s great for me to finally get some more minutes under the belt.
“There was a bit of cramp towards the end, which is to be expected when you haven’t played for a long time.
“It’s still a bit sore, but there’s a bit of a rest before the next game, so I can try to build my fitness back up.”
Pitman’s finish ensured that Pompey got off to a successful start in their defence of the silverware won at Wembley back in March.
Bolton said: “It was difficult in the first half and we were perhaps too deep as a team, which invited pressure onto us.
“But after the break we pushed on and had them pinned right back. I didn’t really have to defend much.”