Cam’s living the dream

A Dutch cricket team’s riding high on the back of a Queenstowner’s contributions with bat and gloves this northern hemisphere summer.

Tall left-hander Cam Jackson’s opening the batting and keeping wicket for a team in The Hague that’s second in the Netherlands’
second-division, 50-over league, in which he’s top run-scorer.

When Mountain Scene visited him last month, the 21-year-old had scored three 90s — two days later, he hit his first offshore 100.

Educated at Queenstown Primary, Christchurch’s St Andrew’s College and Wakatipu High, Jackson then shifted to Dunedin, playing for the Taieri club side and Otago A between completing a sports and exercise science degree at Otago Polytechnic — he’s also played for Otago Country and, occasionally, Queenstown’s Kelvin Heights Ducks.

Having signed with a cricket agency, he flew over to the Netherlands, in April, when The Hague’s Quick Cricket Club needed a wicketkeeper at short notice.

As the senior team’s only pro, he says it looks to him to help win them matches — and, to date, they’ve only lost three 50-over games this season, the first of which Jackson didn’t play in (the team was less successful in its T20 games).

Jackson says playing year-round is definitely improving his game.

He’s been keeping a lot of the time up to the stumps to medium-pacers and spinners — ‘‘you maybe don’t get as much chance to do that in New Zealand’’ — and has enjoyed some long innings at the crease.

He’s hoping the experience will lead him to getting a contract with the Otago Volts in the next year or two.

In addition, he’s coaching the club’s under-17 side.

‘‘This is such an amazing life style — you train during the day, you don’t have to work, don’t have to study.’’

As well as being reimbursed, he’s also been gifted gym member ship, a bike, accommodation and free return flights.

Already he’s close to signing on for another season at the club.

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