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Long wait almost over for Callum Ferguson

AAP logoAAP 10/11/2016 Rob Forsaith

Callum Ferguson is used to waiting.

Ferguson turns 32 later this month and is on the cusp of a Test debut that has been a realistic aim since he was a teenage scholar at the Australian Cricket Board academy (as it was then) in 2003.

Shane Watson was among that year's intake.

Ferguson is also used to waiting on Adam Voges, who is in doubt for the second Test against South Africa that starts on Saturday because of a hamstring injury.

Five years ago it was a somewhat similar story.

"It's a situation I haven't faced too often. Funnily enough probably my main one in Australian colours was during a one-day series and Voges' back caved in on him," Ferguson said in Hobart.

"He managed to get up for that game, he's a pretty resilient character.

"I'm a little nervous about it all.

"Understanding that it might not be this time for me, but if it is I will be 100 per cent prepared."

The South Australia batsman joined the squad as cover for Voges but is very much a chance to be presented with a baggy green regardless of the veteran's health.

Voges and Mitch Marsh are both under pressure to maintain their spots in the XI following a fourth Test loss in a row.

"They will obviously be giving Vogesy every opportunity. I haven't been given a clear directive ... it's just exciting to be around," Ferguson said.

Ferguson has played 30 ODIs and three Twenty20s for Australia but the most recent came in 2011.

Two knee reconstructions have since stalled Ferguson's progress but he always held out hope of a return to international cricket.

Ferguson pointed to Mike Hussey, Chris Rogers and Voges - who all churned out Test runs at an age when conventional wisdom suggested they should be retired - as proof that good things can come on the wrong side of 30.

"It's been an enormous inspiration for me," Ferguson said.

"I started playing one-day cricket for Australia with ... Mike Hussey, who did alright after 30.

"The mindset of the selection policies over the last four or five years has changed a little bit maybe."

Even if Ferguson doesn't play a Test this summer there is every chance he will be part of the touring party for a four-Test series in India that starts in February.

"I do enjoy playing in those conditions," he said, having toured India with Australia A.

"It's obviously a really tough tour for Australians historically but certainly one if I was able to get involved in, I would be enormously excited about.

"I tend to use my feet a fair bit ... I do enjoy facing spin bowling because I get a chance to use my feet."

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