Oh, what a difference a few election cycles makes.

Back in 2010, Assemblyman Greg Ball was running an insurgent campaign for the state Senate seat being vacated by Vincent Leibell.

The preferred candidate by the Senate GOP leadership at the time was May Beth Murphy, a local town supervisor.

A bumper crop of opposition research available to reporters.

Nevertheless, Ball used an effective get-out-the-vote apparatus to his advantage and won the primary and the general election.

Now the Putnam County Republican — a prodigious and energetic fundraiser — is joining the Senate Republican Campaign Committee as a member of the central committee, a reflection of Ball’s growing influence in the Capitol.

“In just his second term in the New York State Senate, Greg Ball has proven himself to be a staunch advocate for veterans and a steady voice for the middle-class, whether it’s his laser-like focus on helping businesses create new private sector jobs or his tireless efforts to enact meaningful tax relief for families,” Senate Republican Leader Dean Skelos said. “In a very short time, Greg has become a valuable member of our team, and he’s exactly the right person to fill this position.”

The SRCC’s new chairwoman, Sen. Cathy Young of Olean, was similarly effusive. Ball is taking the post at the committee she left when she was elevated to the chairwoman job when ailing Sen. Tom Libous of Binghamton stepped aside.

“Greg Ball’s blue-collar, working-class background gives him an ability to connect with people on a very personal level about what is really important and what is at stake. Greg will be a tremendous asset in 2014 and beyond, and I look forward to working with him to grow our conference so we can continue to deliver for taxpayers and their families,” Young said ni a statement.

Ball has touted his record of not always voting with the GOP leadership and is also something of a political brand unto himself.

But he has remained a loyal member of the Senate Republican conference nonetheless since his election, making him a lawmaker with tea party roots who often publicly backs Skelos, who has come under criticism from the GOP’s conservative base.