Melbourne [Australia], Sept. 6 : Australian seamer John Hastings has questioned spinner and his longtime friend Steve O'Keefe's inclusion in the national Test squad against Bangladesh despite still being suspended by New South Wales for poor behaviour.
O'Keefe was recalled in the Australian squad as a replacement for injured Josh Hazlewood for the second Test of the two-match series against Bangladesh, which began on September 4 in Chittagong.
O'Keefe's recall comes as a major surprise as he is still under suspension from New South Wales and that it was quite a few months after his time in the national team appeared to be over.
Giving voice to those who has been questioning O'Keefe's inclusion in the squad, Hastings wondered as to how the national selectors chose the spinner to go to Bangladesh instead of Jon Holland, who was a part of Australia's pre-tour camp in Darwin and was highly impressive during an intra-squad practice match.
"I really feel for Dutchy [Holland].Steve O'Keefe was best man at my wedding so I'm rapt for him, but probably by all rights he probably doesn't deserve to be there. He's suspended by NSW Cricket and he's over playing for Australia. It's an interesting one that one," ESPNcricinfo quoted Hastings as saying.
"I don't think Jon Holland can do any more than what he has done over the last few years. Last year he was prolific for the Bushrangers. He went up to Darwin [to the camp], got four or five for one in a spell. I honestly don't know what the selectors could be saying to him, if anything. It's just unbelievable," he added.
Although O'Keefe had revealed that he informed by the NSW chief executive Andrew Jones and Australia's selection chairman Trevor Hohns that the sanction did not include Test squad selection, many had raised queries about how O'Keefe managed to return to the Test team.
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