Over the moon! - A dream come true for John Campbell
For 25-year-old John Campbell, getting called up for the West Indies team is a dream come true.
He has been included in the West Indies squad for the first Test against England in Barbados next week and he is, to say the least, overjoyed.
"Well I am over the moon," he told The Gleaner. "This is what I have been working towards since I have been going to primary school."
The former Tacky High student was happy, but not overly shocked at the call up.
"I wouldn't say I was surprised based on the team's performances on the last two tours. The batsmen have been struggling. I have always been hearing from my coaches and others who have been telling me that I just need big scores to get in because there is a place for me. That is what I was working on, to constantly and consistently get big scores."
The aggressive left handed opener has played 55 first class games with an average of 30.06. He has three first class hundreds and a whopping 18 half centuries. He has been criticised in the past for his failure to make hundreds when seemingly well set. It is something that he agrees he has to work on, not only for the upcoming England series, but for his cricket in general.
CONVERSION A BIG DEAL
"Conversion is a big thing for me. ... I have only three first class hundreds and quite a few half centuries. I am definitely looking forward to bettering that when ever I do get in and get starts like I normally do. I think it's more mental than anything else and I'm trying to get a good head space so that whenever I get a start like that, in any form of cricket I will be able to push on."
Apart from his explosive batting at the top of the order Campbell is also a more than useful off-spinner. In his 55 games he has taken 56 wickets at 29.64 each. Interestingly he has never seen himself as a potentially good all-rounder but now that international cricket looms, he wants to improve on his bowling as he feels it will develop his overall game.
"I think I need to take my bowling a lot more seriously than I currently do. Basically I just go in the nets when I am asked by a coach to bowl a few balls. I don't take my bowling that seriously but it is definitely something I will be working on."
The easy going opener is quite spiritual and says when he heard about his selection, he first of all thanked God "for giving me the talent and keeping me fit and healthy."
He also thanked a very supportive family. His parents are big fans of his and he says his mother has flown in from abroad several times to see him play. He has a special mention for his grandfather Clive Campbell though, who he says was the one that really started his interest in the game.
Age - 25
First-class matches - 55
Runs scored - 3037
Batting average - 30.06
Centuries - 3
Bowling average - 29.64
Wickets - 56