'Last 12 months have been a whirlwind' - Fekete
Andrew Fekete was a 26-year-old accountant when he emerged from Victorian club cricket to make his debut for his state in 2012. It was a one-day match against South Australia at the MCG; Fekete took two wickets and had his foot broken by a powerful Theo Doropoulos drive. He didn't know what his future would hold, and he never again played for Victoria.
But Tasmania liked what they saw from Fekete, and offered him a deal for the following season. A first-class debut came at 28, then a big Sheffield Shield summer at 29, and at 30 he has shot out of left field to be picked in Australia's squad for next month's Test tour of Bangladesh. Even Fekete considered himself "a fair way down the pecking order" a couple of months ago.
"The last 12 months have been a whirlwind," Fekete told reporters in Hobart. "I guess it's all been about opportunity. I tried to do the best I could for Tasmania and it's snowballed from there.
"In Victoria I was in and around the group a little but didn't get the opportunity to be contracted and be a full-time cricketer which Tasmania gave me. I just wanted to see where I could get to and initially I was given a two-year contract and if at the end of that two years Tasmania said 'thanks very much and see you later', I still would have been pleased as I would have had a crack and got the best out of myself."
Australia's selectors were impressed by Fekete's 2014-15, in which he collected 37 wickets at 24.10 and was the leading wicket-taker among fast bowlers. He added two more matches to his first-class tally - up to 18 games - on this year's Australia A tour of India, and national selector Rod Marsh said Fekete was quick, accurate, could reverse swing the ball and had earned his chance.
"He slipped under the guard of a lot of people but we've had our eye on him for a while," Marsh said. "He took 37 first-class wickets in the Sheffield Shield competition last year. He bowled very well in India. He's able to bowl with good pace, he's around 140kph. He can generate reverse swing when need be, when conditions suit, and he's a pretty good bloke. He deserved his opportunity.
"He's just one of those old fashioned fast bowlers who runs in and bowls pretty straight. There's nothing too fancy about him, except that he bowls stump to stump. He hasn't played a lot of cricket either, you have to remember that. He might be 30 but cricket-wise he's probably 25, body-wise, because he hasn't been through the rigours of year after year of non-stop cricket. He's fresh and ready to go."
Fekete won his place on the Bangladesh tour in the absence of Mitchell Johnson and Josh Hazlewood, who have been rested ahead of a busy home summer. He was also preferred ahead of James Pattinson, who has remodelled his action and was described by Marsh as being down on confidence in the recent ODI series in England.
Brydon Coverdale is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. @brydoncoverdale