Xavier Doherty

  • Last Updated: December 9 2010, 10:49 GMT

Born: 22/11/1982Tests: 2Role: BowlerRuns: 27Average: 9.00Wickets: 3Average: 102.00

A first-class bowling average of just under 50 may not suggest greatness, but Xavier Doherty could end up being the answer to Australia's spin problems.

The left-arm slow bowler has surged into contention for the Ashes despite only becoming a regular for Tasmania during the last Australian summer.

He made his first-class debut at the age of 19 having already been picked out as a future star whilst representing his country in the Under 19 World Cup.

However Doherty never quite fulfilled that early potential, floating in and out of the side in the longer format of the game as he battled it out with Jason Krejza to be Tasmania's first-choice spinner.

It seemed he would be destined to be no more than a one-day specialist; he took 4-18 to help Tasmania secure a trophy in 2007-08.

His performances saw him rewarded with a call-up to the Australia A one-day team that travelled to India in 2008 and he went on to play for the full side in a Twenty20 match against an All-Stars team later in the same year.

However he had to wait until November 2010 to make his full debut for Australia - and immediately took four wickets against Sri Lanka in Melbourne.

With Nathan Hauritz struggling for form the 27-year-old was selected as the frontline spinning option in Australia's 13-man squad for the series opener against England in Brisbane.

As well as his bowling, Doherty can also offer some useful runs down the order and he has an impressive strike-rate of 123.33 in Twenty20 cricket.