For so many years Mat Skinner had been on the outside looking in.
A regular around Dubbo representative cricket for a number of seasons, the all-rounder had never been quite able to take that next step and break into the Western Zone side.
But with the squad undergoing plenty of change ahead of this season's Cricket NSW Country Championship, Skinner has finally got his long-awaited call-up.
"I've had my eye on a spot for a few years now but never got the call-up so hopefully now I can take some wickets and score some runs," he said.
"I thought if it was not this year then I'd never make it. This was my chance with a lot of changes so the opportunity is there."
The battle for places in the Dubbo side has been immense during the past decade, let alone Western Zone.
Skinner has been behind the likes of Tim Cox, Tim Berry, Ben Patterson, Tom Atlee at different times in recent seasons and those players have been locks for Dubbo and Western when available.
But those players are no longer around the squad and the only two Dubbo players in the squad this time are Skinner and Rugby all-rounder Jacob Hill.
Hill was a late call-up after his fellow Dubbo duo Marty Jeffrey and Brock Larance pulled out of the original squad.
Western contests the Southern Pool of the Country Championship from Friday, with a clash against Greater Illawarra at Goulburn's Prell Oval starting things.
Skinner wasn't 100 percent sure of his role heading into the carnival but he's eager to just play his natural game, and he wants to rest of the new-look Western side to do the same.
"If you look at the team each bloke does a job for their town," he said.
"It's going to be a really good experience and there will be pretty decent cricketers so we just have to stick to our game.
"You don't need to change now to try and match the situation. There might be some guys who look a bit ugly when they bat but that doesn't matter if it works."
If he does get the chance, Skinner will do what so many within Dubbo cricket have had to contend with for many years.
"Get the ball in hand and bowl to the field and then try and hit some runs," he put simply.
Hill is expected to feature in the top order for Western while he too may need to get through some overs for the Jameel Qureshi-coached Western side.
Hill has enjoyed a fine start to the RSL-Whitney Cup season and Skinner said the Rugby gun was hard done by not to make the original squad.
The Newtown skipper also felt his brother and fellow all-rounder, Steve, was unlucky not to make the squad for the Southern Pool carnival at Goulburn and Queanbeyan.
Skinner added he expects the three days to be the highest level cricket he's been a part of.
The Newtown captain has previously been a member of the Orana Outlaws squad which has won the Plan B Regional Bash final at the Sydney Cricket Ground, but the depth of the sides competing in the Southern Pool is expected to be stronger.
After Friday's one-day match against Greater Illawarra, Western meets ACT Southern Districts and then Riverina.
- WESTERN ZONE: Jaden Ekert (Bathurst), Jacob Hill (Dubbo) James Larkin (Orange), Ed Morrish (Orange), Imran Qureshi (Bathurst, captain), Jameel Qureshi (Bathurst), Adam Ryan (Bathurst), Henry Shoemark (Bathurst), Connor Slattery (Bathurst), Myles Smith (Parkes), Matt Skinner (Dubbo), Mitch Taylor (Bathurst), Brent Tucker (Parkes)