Kye Rowles missed much of the European campaign when Heart of Midlothian last qualified for the group stages. The Australian is "buzzing" to be involved next campaign.

The centre-back spoke about that excitement with the press, as well as the rest of the season and his international exploits.

Read everything he said below...

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How will you approach the final three games of the season?

Look, it’s obviously nice to have third place wrapped up – but the foot will still be on the gas. There are only three games left and it would be silly to throw away all the hard work with sloppy performances to end the season. We're all excited and keen, two home games as well and we are all determined to put on good performances and enjoy it. There’s no pressure left so we can really go out and play pressure-free football and with smiles on our faces.

How excited would you be going straight into the Europa League?

There’s been a bit of chat about it but either way, it’s such a great opportunity for us and I would still fancy us in the qualifiers anyway. It would be special to compete in the group stages of the Europa or the Conference and it's a good reward for the boys working all year, especially from the unfortunate events of last year. We’re buzzing to be back in the mixer and we can't wait.

A lot of the squad have experienced the demands of the schedule that European football brings, will the team be more ready to handle that?

I think having a lot of the boys still here from that first season in the group stages definitely will help in terms of being used to playing on Thursdays and Sundays. You do it get it a couple of times a year with the league and cup games. It’s really tough doing it week in, week out for a couple of months, just with the travel and stuff, and the fatigue can build up. We had a lot of injuries at the same time when we were going through that and short-manned a bit but hopefully everyone is fit and healthy but we’ll be better equipped this time, for sure.

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How significant is it this time around that the games will be spaced out and not be as crammed in due to the World Cup?

I think will make a difference. When you look at the calendar and think there are a lot of games coming up. I think it will go a long way to staying fresh – in body and mind – if there’s the odd gap weeks in there.

Is there also the mental fatigue of playing somewhere on the continent and then going back to play in Paisley on Sunday for example?

I was pretty bummed out to miss out last time because I didn't play in the group games. But I can speak from the Rosenborg game. We had the highs of that and the cup on the Sunday, we put in a nice, comfortable performance (to beat Partick Thistle) and it was a good shift from the boys, nice and professional. Even the start of the season with those qualifiers it helped the boys understand. We want to put in the best performance we can but it just hasn't been here but we've still won. That's what the best teams do when it is Thursday, Sunday. Madrid have done it in the Champions League. They haven't been the best but they still manage to come out with the win. Hopefully we can emulate what the best teams in the world do.

How hard was that missing those big games, were you just sat at home watching?

I was pretty much watching the away games from my lounge. The atmosphere for the Tynecastle games was just second to none. It was so special. You wish you could be out there running around with the boys. The teams you can face in these competitions are amazing and I can’t wait to get stuck into it.

Are you a big watcher of European football, there are some big stories in the different competitions.

To be honest, I don't watch much football. I always watch the highlights and things like that so I see the goals, the big chances and stuff. We want to go on as deep a run as possible. We don't want to turn up and just be a number. We’ll work hard in pre-season and make sure we are fighting fit to give ourselves the best opportunity in the qualifiers.

Do you feel your style is more suited to European football?

You don't know what you are going to get from these sorts of teams. You can watch all the footage you want but they could turn up and do something different on the night. It's hard to say, just the excitement and the teams you get to play, I just can't wait.

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Will you be excited to travel the world as part of that as well?

Exactly right. I hope we get some good countries I haven't been to yet. That would be pretty nice. You don't get to spend much time there but even just a walk around in the evening before or morning of the game. I’ll be taking photos for sure so hopefully, we will get a good few trips and a few warmer countries.

For Australia, you will be playing in Bangladesh before facing Palestine back home?

I actually bumped into Jason Cummings the other day and he played there when he was in India. He said it’s pretty interesting so I’ll see how it goes! 

It will be a short summer?

It’s worth it to play for your country and they are World Cup qualifiers, so it’s important stuff.

Are you still living off your goal against Lebanon from the last international break?

Pretty much, it was special. I’ve had so many chances this season here but not managed to get one I’ve come close a few times, hitting the post or bar or saved. Hopefully, I’ll get one this week.