Campbell's big gamble pays off
ANDREW Campbell took a punt on himself, and it paid off.
Ahead of the 2017-18 Australian Baseball League season, Campbell decided his best chance at selection to Team Australia was to fully commit to his craft.
That meant quitting his job as a labourer, and focusing all his energy on impressing with the Brisbane Bandits.
"(Playing for Australia) has always been a goal of mine. I set my sights on it this year, so I quit work to fully focus on my baseball so I could be fresh, and it paid off in the end," the Ipswich product said.
"I was working in the shipping yards. It was a casual job - I've always had a casual job because of my baseball - but it was just too physically demanding."
Taking the job off his plate was one thing, but with a baby on the way and house renovations progressing it was still a juggling act for the Bandits centre fielder.
"It put a bit of a strain on everything at home, it was a big sacrifice, but now everyone is congratulating me (on my selection) and I couldn't be happier," Campbell said, who has returned to work briefly before he flies out for Japan at the end of the month.
The 26-year-old is one of 10 Bandits named to the 28-man Team Australia squad.
"We had training on the Wednesday before we went down to Canberra (for the first game of the ABLCS) and (coach David Nilsson) announced it in front of the squad," Campbell said.
"He wanted everyone to know so we could fully focus on the finals series."
The Bandits lost that game, but won the next two on their way to a historic three-peat.
"I said (winning) last year was an awesome achievement, but nothing tops getting three in a row," Campbell said.