Spinner O'Keefe puts case forward for India tour selection

Sydney, Jan 24(ANI): Stephen O'Keefe has emerged as a likely contender for the vacant second spinner spot in the Australian Test team for next month's Test tour of India.

The 28-year-old will captain New South Wales (NSW) as they recommence their Sheffield Shield and could bowl his way into Michael Clarke's squad with a standout performance against the Warriors, the Sydney Morning Herald reports.

The state of the country's shrinking spinning stocks mean that the role as Lyon's back-up in India is wide open, particularly after a shoulder injury suffered in training this week by Michael Beer, the paper added.

Selectors are tipped to include spin-bowling all-rounder Glenn Maxwell alongside Lyon in the touring party to the subcontinent but are considering other candidates such as O'Keefe, and Xavier Doherty, as additional personnel in a 15-man squad, the paper reported.

O'Keefe is respected not only for his first-class record, as he averages 29 with the ball, but also for his maturity and a first-class batting average of 31.65 does him no harm either.

O'Keefe said to play for Australia you have to be performing consistently and putting strong performances together back to back, adding he is not even thinking about India to be honest. (ANI)