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Bowling contenders for India tour

We take a look at some of players who could be considered to make up the bowling unit for Australia's Test squad to tour India

Australia will announce their Test squad on Sunday for the upcoming tour of India and there's set to be plenty of surprises in the touring party.

While 10 players appear to be locks for the tour, there's several spots up for grabs with selectors seeking an allrounder and also some back-up bowling options.

Quick single: Ten locks for the tour of India

Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood, Nathan Lyon and Steve O'Keefe are certain selections, but which bowlers will join them?

Quick Single: Seven batting/allrounder contenders for India tour

We take a look at the main contenders, in no particular order.


Jackson Bird


2016-17 first-class record: M: 7 | Wickets: 31 | Ave: 28.12 | Best-bowling: 3-23


Test matches in Asia: N/A

Bird's seed takes care of Younis

The tall paceman performed well after earning a Baggy Green recall in the wake of Australia’s disastrous defeat to South Africa in Hobart. Bird went on to snare 13 wickets in three Tests before making way for Stephen O’Keefe at the spin-friendly SCG. He’ll nonetheless be firmly in the selectors' minds for India and his selection in Australia’s Test squad for their most recent venture to the subcontinent, a 0-3 series defeat in Sri Lanka last year, bodes well for him. And while he typically thrives on wickets offering a little bit of seam movement, Bird showed he’s adept with the reverse-swinging ball on dry surfaces too during his maiden five-wicket haul in Christchurch last February.

Chris Tremain

2016-17 first-class record: M: 5 | Wickets: 27 | Ave: 17.55 | Best-bowling: 4-22

Test matches in Asia: N/A

Tremain's four lifts Bushrangers at the 'G

A slingy right-arm quick, Tremain was selected for his international debut on Australia’s one-day international tour of South Africa in October on the back of a breakout Sheffield Shield season in 2015-16. His 36 wickets last summer came at 21.05 last year and, sitting on 27 scalps 17.55 at halfway point of this Shield season, he looks on track to better that performance. But a call-up to Australia’s Test squad could put a happy end to that, a possibility flagged by Mike Hussey, who suggested his ability to regularly hit speeds in excess of 140 kmph could count in his favour.

Adam Zampa

2016-17 first-class record: M: 3 | Wickets: 9 | Ave: 47.88 | Best-bowling: 4-141

Test matches in Asia: N/A

Zampa corrals Bulls with a bag of wickets

While he hasn’t set the world on fire in first-class cricket, Zampa has thrived in the shorter formats for Australia and has proven experience on the subcontinent. The leg-spinner was a shining light during Australia’s World T20 campaign and his subsequent Indian Premier League stint with Pune (where Australia incidentally kick off their Test tour on February 23) was also productive, snaring 12 wickets in just five games. The question for the selection panel is whether they believe the confident wrist-spinner can translate those performances into the Test arena.

Mitchell Swepson

2016-17 first-class record: M: 4 | Wickets: 10 | Ave: 43.00 | Best-bowling: 3-56

Test matches in Asia: N/A

Swepson's four seals South Africa A's fate

A more traditional leggie compared to Zampa, calls to blood the 23-year-old have grown in recent weeks, due in part to impressive showings for the Brisbane Heat in the KFC Big Bash League. Swepson has made an excellent start to his first-class career too, with 41 wickets at 32.82 in his first 14 matches, which are good numbers for a young spinner. Swepson travelled to Sri Lanka with the National Performance Squad last year, working on his craft in the nets with the Test squad. With both Michael Clarke and Shane Warne endorsing him for a berth in the squad for India, the Queenslander may well find himself out in the middle with those he’d practiced against.

Chadd Sayers

2016-17 first-class record: M: 5 | Wickets: 29 | Ave: 18.58 | Best-bowling: 6-32

Test matches in Asia: N/A

Super Sayers rattles Blues with five-fa

The nagging Redbacks seamer has been the standout quick in the Sheffield Shield in recent seasons and this summer has been no exception. Sayers leads all comers at the top of the wicket-taking charts with 29 scalps at the competition’s halfway point. The selectors have recognised his efforts with selection in the travelling party that went to New Zealand last summer, while he was 12th man for three consecutive Tests before O’Keefe’s inclusion in Sydney edged him out the squad. But Sayers, who relies more on subtle movement than raw pace, would appear to be a long shot for the tour of India.

James Pattinson


2016-17 first-class record: N/A

Test matches in Asia: M: 3 | Wickets: 9 | Ave: 27.77| Best-bowling 5-96

Patto strikes with his first over

With 70 wickets in just 17 Tests, the temptation to rush Pattinson back into the national set-up is ever-present. The Victorian only begun his comeback to top-flight cricket with the Melbourne Renegades last week following a near 11-month absence. And while’s he been nursed through the early part of the season, that phenomenal Test record, which includes a five-wicket haul on Australia’s last Test tour of India, means the Pattinson name will have at least been mentioned around the selection table.

Pat Cummins


2016-17 first-class record: N/A


Test matches in Asia: N/A

Brisbane left Thunder-struck by rapid Cummins

A similar story to Pattinson, Cummins has battled a succession of injuries in recent years since his stunning Test debut in 2011. The tearaway has been held back from the Sheffield Shield despite making a successful return via the Matador BBQs One-Day Cup for NSW but has impressed for Australia in the ODI arena and for the Sydney Thunder in the KFC Big Bash League. But Pat Howard dropped a hint in December that the right-armer would be unlikely to feature in Australia’s plans for India. Though, like Pattinson, the rare pace that Cummins possesses means there’s always a lure to pick him.

Fawad Ahmed


2016-17 first-class record: N/A


Test matches in Asia: N/A

Fawad rips through the Sixers with four wickets

The rise of Jon Holland, who made his Test debut in Sri Lanka in August, has seen Fawad relegated to the sidelines with Victoria despite having claimed 75 wickets from the previous two Sheffield Shield seasons. Despite not having made an appearance in the whites for the Bushrangers this summer, former Test captain Steve Waugh nominated the Pakistan-born leg-spinner as a potential bolter for the India tour. And while his international experience has been limited to five white ball matches in his career to date, Fawad has first-class experience in Pakistan and could be a point of difference for Australia.