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Monday, 30 July 2012

Warren meets... Shaun Batt

As I was wondering who else to interview this week, a few on Twitter were demanding Shaun Batt. Of course, my "fans" mean everything to me :) so, supply and demand, ladies and gents, here it is!

WL: Shaun, you were fortunate enough to be blessed with the skills of both football and athletics, why did you choose to kick a ball in the end?

SB: It was a tough decision to be honest. I've got love for both. My last year, I think I was under 17 and I did really well. Unfortunately, I missed out on refunding by about 5 or 6 centimetres and the following year I went up to the next age group which was under 20's and I'd have had 3 years at that age group. My football then started to take off and I made the decision to follow my football and see where it went and luckily it's got me to where I am today.

WL: It's fair to say you were quite good at running! You did the 100m, 200m and the Triple Jump, which event were you best at do you feel?

SB: Triple Jump was my best event definitely.

WL: Instead of seeing you at the Broadfield today, could we have seen you at the Olympics in London?!

SB: You never know I guess, possibly, but I suppose we will never know what could have been!

Olympic Park bound could have been a possibility
WL: Onto the football and you've made the long route up to get to where you are being a professional, how did the non-league experiences effect you?

SB: Yeah, I think playing at non-league level made me a lot stronger. I was playing senior football from the age of about 16 and obviously I came from non-league which helped me get stronger and adapt to the physical game and it's got me where I am today. It's taken me a long time but I finally got there.

WL: You joined Peterborough in 2008 as your first full time club, are you grateful that they took the chance on you?

SB: Yeah definitely. I owe a lot to Darren Ferguson (Peterborough Manager) and Peterborough. Like you said, he took a chance on me. I was playing Conference South football at the time and he developed me and made me a better player. He's been a big part in getting me where I am.

Ferguson gave Shaun his chance
WL: After Posh, you joined Millwall, firstly on loan before the move was made a permanent one. Unfortunately you have been blighted by injuries, do you feel these injuries are behind you now?

SB: Yeah, it was a major injury and I picked up a number of little niggles here and there since that major injury. Pre-season is really, really important for me where I've missed so much football. I still get the little niggles here and there but, instead of last year where they were putting me out for three weeks and sending me back to square one, I'm now out for two days, maybe three days and then I'm back in training again. My body is now adapting that little bit more and I'm getting back to the player I was when I signed and hopefully my best form is next to come.

THE FLYING BATT: Shaun in full flight
WL: You of course played for Crawley on loan from Millwall for a part of last season, was that an enjoyable time for you?

SB: It was yeah, very enjoyable. I would have liked to have perhaps played more but like I've said, I'd been out for a long time and Crawley were chasing promotion at the time. I was grateful to Crawley for taking me and the month that I was there, it helped me when I went back to Millwall. I also managed to play a few games at the end of the season for Millwall so yeah, I'm very grateful.

WL: Of course your brother Damian is at Oxford at the moment, could he play at a higher level in your view?

SB: Yeah, sure. If you ask any footballer then they'll tell you he's the better one out of the two of us! He's a very good player and every day he's trying to get to as high a level as he can and whether it's at Oxford or somewhere else, hopefully that will come.

Brother, Damian is a right back for Oxford
WL: Have you played against him before?

SB: We've never actually played against each other. I did play against Oxford for Peterborough a couple of years back but unfortunately he was injured at the time so never played!

WL: Finally, you''re 25 now, what does the future hold for Shaun Batt?

SB: Who knows? I've got a few goals and aims that I want to achieve in my career. I'm lucky to have achieved a lot of things in the short space of time that I've been in the professional game. Hopefully this season I'll play some regular football and get maybe 30-40 games under my belt and then kick on. I'd love to play in the Premier League, I'd love to represent my country so those are things I'd love to be able to achieve when I look back on my career.

Shaun and me
Many thanks to Shaun for taking the time out to speak to me.

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