Rhys Williams is feeling refreshed and recharged ahead of the new Championship season with Middlesbrough.
The Boro captain was disappointingly left out of the Australian squad for vital World Cup qualifiers in June but suggests it may have been just the rest he needed from the game after struggling with an ankle injury last term.
"After missing four months of last season with an ankle injury, then struggling for form when I returned in a team that was also finding it hard to get results, missing out on those World Cup qualifiers was really the icing on the cake," he told SBS.
"But being left out might be a blessing in disguise because I got married and got a break from football for the first time in a while and I now feel totally recharged heading into the new season.”
Williams, who has made 11 Socceroos appearances, added: "Of course when I saw I wasn't selected it was a bit of a surprise and a shock because it's the first time I hadn't been in a squad when I've been fit for quite a while and you always want to be involved for your country.
"But it just shows that you can't take anything for granted and if anything it was a something of a reality check."