This time 12 months ago, the powerful lock forward was anticipating making a quick return to action after a summer shoulder operation following a hugely impressive first full season in English rugby.
Instead, complications meant the 26-year-old was forced to go under the knife once again and it wasn't until late February, with Sale in the throes of a desperate battle to avoid relegation, that the former Agen and Aurillac star was finally able to return to action.
His physicality and presence made a big difference as Sale staged a dramatic spring offensive to turn their season around and finish on a high.
And Ostrikov, who has been joined at Sale this summer by Russian colleague Kirill Kulemin, admitted the general relief at Sale securing their top flight status was mirrored by his own emotions.
"I was just so glad to come back fit and to be playing again and I enjoyed every moment out there with the team," he recalled.
"I had to have two operations on my left shoulder.
"The first one didn't sort out the original problem and it was a very difficult time for me.
"My morale was really down at that time and I was thinking about my life, about sport, and I was worried I may not come back as good I was before.
"My girlfriend and all of my friends really helped me in that period.
"But it was very difficult watching the team and not being able to play."
Before being pitched back into battle however, Ostrikov admitted he had to conquer his own inner demons.
After so long on the sidelines, the mental barrier of subjecting his shoulder to robust challenges in training had left him full of trepidation.
"The hardest thing was going back to training, as it was on my mind, and testing my shoulder in tackles," Ostrikov admitted.
"But I came through training and then the games and it is great now.
"I didn't think I had to start off at my maximum. I wanted to do it step by step.
"But when I got back playing all those worries went away and you just go out do your job.
"If you had asked me last Christmas what did I want most I would have said to be playing so it was great.
"Now, looking forward, I want to have an injury-free season and to really help the team in the Premiership."
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