German club makes Ipswich sportsman feel at home
ALTHOUGH missing seven weeks through his recent injury, Andrew Campbell enjoyed being part of the professional Heidenheim Heidekopfe club in Germany.
"It was a pretty good standard,'' the four-time national title-winning Brisbane Bandits baseballer said.
"We trained every day. That's a big difference (to club ball in Ipswich and Brisbane).''
Campbell said it was a valuable experience, even when he got hurt.
"That's part of the reason I went there because with the Olympics on the horizon, I wanted to make sure I kept playing and training,'' he said.
"That was very good for me.''
The Ipswich sportsman accepted the overseas opportunity having heard through friends playing there how family orientated the club was.
"Part of the reason I went to Heidenheim was because I knew how much they looked after their players,'' he said. "They really made me feel at home.''
Heidenheim, with similar values to his home club Musketeers, was an hour's drive from Munich and with a population of about 50,000.
"They had a pretty strong soccer team but when the soccer's not on, they all get around the baseball,'' Campbell said, appreciating the fan support. "Being a small town suited me.''
Despite the cold, meeting other international players was another bonus of spending time in Germany.
Among the players he worked with in Germany was pitcher Logan Grigsby, who is on his way to play a Greater Brisbane League (GBL) season with the Ipswich Musketeers.
Campbell's main priority was maintaining his fitness with an Olympic lead-up year looming.
"Baseball is such a tough game that the main thing to keep on top of it is to keep playing,'' he said.
Back training after completing his Heidenheim stint, Campbell said the positive of his recent injury was it gave him a chance to have a short break.
Campbell, who turns 28 in February, will play for the Musketeers in coming GBL games before three weeks of Team Australia commitments.
He'll resume his national league career with the Brisbane Bandits in late November.
Being part of a core group of players who stick together and have a winning mentality, Campbell was confident of another successful national league season after fulfilling his latest Team Australia duties.