Cammy Devlin has featured in the last five Heart of Midlothian matches, starting the 1-0 win over Greenock Morton and the draw with Hibs.

The midfielder, when he sat down to speak with the press ahead of the trip to face Ross County, discussed getting back into the team, his injury absence, working on his game and the Australia squad.

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Is the goal now to get a consistent run of games between now and the end of the season?

Definitely. It has been a weird season for me. I started the season really good, I was really happy with my performances. I thought I was really good. You get injured and it was worse than I first thought, it was three, three and a half months. Since then the team has been doing unbelievably well so for any player, and I'm no exception to it, you can't expect to come back into the team and start playing. It's my character to work as hard as I possibly can, whether I am playing, whether I'm on the bench, whether I am starting and to make sure when I do play I'm ready to go and that's what I've been doing. I'm so happy to be part of a winning team, winning culture which I think should be the minimum when you are at a club like Hearts. From now until the end of the season I want to play as much as I can and again on Saturday and perform as best as I can.

What are you like when you are injured?

Probably the worst! I would probably say my worst attribute is when I am injured. You have your first couple of days where the world sucks but if you feel sorry for yourself it is only going to work against you because at the end of the day, you are the one that has to make yourself better and come back to be ready to perform. You guys know my character, I just put my head down, work as hard as I can, try to make my gym my best friend even though it might not look like it. Just make sure everything around my ankle [is good], listening to the staff who have been brilliant with me all the way through, I couldn't have asked for rehab to be done any better, to be honest. I am not really good at being injured but I guess it helps on a personal level when they are winning.


When you are injured and far away from home, how did you find that bit of it?

It's hard to be honest. First thing, when you are playing and playing really well I still miss my family. FaceTime is the best thing in the world, without that it would make it a bit harder. I've come here for a reason, I'm living the dream I wanted to live so you can't complain. I am fortunate to be at an amazing club that from the first day I joined, everyone at the club, the boys, the staff [have been great] and fortunate the fans have got behind me. It does make such a difference to make you feel welcome and feel a part of what you are actually trying to do and spurs you on to work that bit harder. I think everyone can see that when I am out there on the pitch to give back to the support that have been given and the faith from the people here. To be injured is horrible and you are in the dark but there are boys here who have been out a lot longer than me but credit to them because it is really hard. At the end of the day, every footballer goes through some form of injury during their career, whether they are really bad or not so bad. It builds resilience and you've got to be the one that comes back better otherwise you are the one that is going to be harmed.

Would you say you are watching games a bit closer?

I think you do. It is a lot easier when you are watching. The game looks a lot easier than when you are out there! There are parts of my game... the coaching staff and Naisy have been working with me, talking with me and watching clips of parts of the game they want me to improve. When you are sitting back knowing what they want then when you watch it you can actually see the movements. Then when you come back to train and you are out there you are doing the things they've been telling you and you've seen it in the flesh when you are watching to go and improve it. When you are injured that is something that can work in your favour. If you just go to the games and watch the boys and go home but if you actually tune in and pick up little things that can help you when you come back. That's what I tried to do. 

Do you think you are a changed player under Naismith or in the process of changing?

Naisy has been really good with me. He has put a lot of faith in me and sat me down and told me that my strong attributes he really likes and doesn't want me to change but also sees improvements in me that we have spoken about that he thinks will help me become a better player at the end of the day. I've really appreciated it because it would be easy for him to not do that but he sees something in me. I have appreciated the time they have all taken, Franky, Gordy and Naisy, to sit me down and show me clips. This bit where I win the ball back and start the play but then the next phase of the attack when the ball is moving forward to go and join in and create a little bit, be a bit braver on the ball. That is something I know I have got to improve, there are so many parts of my game I need to improve to get to where I want to be. To be given faith and be told where they want me to improve means they see something in me and it is about putting in the work to make it happen.

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Is being more involved in the final third, getting into the box, getting more goals something he wants you to do?

Yeah, definitely. His message on Monday was to let the build-up happen. I was one of the more attacking midfielders and if I had to drop in to get the ball then do so, but I was to get in the box and join the attacks. There's a bit of freedom to get up there when the ball is on the wing or whatever. Not that it doesn't come naturally to me but I'm used to backing up the play. It's about just building your all-round game, going from a defensive midfielder to an all-round midfielder. It's exciting. If someone is putting in time to make you better then embrace it and work hard because that's how you become a better footballer. That's something I want to do. Sometimes it comes naturally to move a bit back but I've been trying to do it. I made a few good passes. There was one at the end to Shanks before I came off and he sent it to Kenny. Unfortunately, he just missed. Little things like that, they are thinking if you can create a bit more and join in attacks then you become a better player.

Did you play like that or further forward at any other point in your career?

I was a striker when I was younger but that only lasted a few games, as you can probably see. A positive for me is that I'm more of a midfielder in terms of winning that ball back, but I can play attacking midfield, middle or defensive mid. That works in your favour if you can play in a few different positions. I'm comfortable in all of them. If I'm on the pitch I don't really care where I am. I've done it before but not at this level. It's about putting the work in on the training pitch and listening to my coaches. Naisy has played at the highest level, so I listen and put the work in. I take in all the information I can and try to make it happen on the pitch.

Why did you not stay a striker?

I think it's pretty clear I'm not the best goalscorer. I like tackling too much as well. That's two pretty important things.

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Is there a player Naismith has suggested you model your game on?

He hasn't named a player to model your game on. I'm not playing as a No.10. It's more a No.8. You are in between a defensive midfielder and an attacking midfielder. At the same time, I'm just as comfortable playing the defensive midfield role that Beni plays. Naisy is just showing me different little things. When we are training, he will break it and say: 'Cammy, you could maybe move outside here or move there.' It's about watching it back and picking up the information to improve myself as an all-round midfielder.

Did you have an eye on the Socceroos squad on a personal level?

I was gutted but at the same time, I wasn't sure on this one. I'd been out for so long, came back and wasn't starting every game. I didn't expect to because of the run the boys were on. Getting in the Socceroos, if you start expecting it then it's probably a really bad thing to be comfortable with. Every time I get that call-up, it's the best day of my life. You are representing your country and more often than not you are going home to see your family as well. Unfortunately, I haven't been selected. That's life. I've been injured for three-and-a-half months and played a few games since then. There is always that little bit of hope. The physios were in contact with me but I didn't make the final squad. It's up to me from now until the end of the season to play my best and hopefully get in the camp in the summer. I'm stoked for Natty and Rowlesy getting picked.

What is the next aim for Australia?

There are World Cup qualifiers in June so that's the goal. You set your long-term goals but at the same time, when you come back from injury, I just want to get back in the team and play as many games as possible. I believe that if I play to the best of my ability then I will hopefully be in Arnie's thoughts to be in that final squad.