NSW's Smith knocks on Oz Test selectors' door

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Sydney, Mar 5(ANI): New South Wales (NSW) all-rounder Steve Smith continues to underline his already strong case for selection in the team for the New Zealand Test series by making a timely 177 against Tasmania at Bellerive Oval on Thursday.

Smith's 247-ball century with the help of 20 fours and five sixes, came as the Australian selectors meet this weekend to pick the squad for the two-Test tour of New Zealand this month.

As far as breakthrough seasons go, Smith's has been extraordinary and this was his third first-class century in just his 12th first-class match.

All three of the tons have been scored this summer, in which he has played nine Shield games for 636 runs.

Meanwhile, former Test off-spinner Ashley Mallett said the New Zealand tour was a perfect opportunity to blood the 20-year-old Smith.

"I thought he bowled bloody well in the recent Twenty20 series against New Zealand. He got that two-for and he looks good under pressure," The Australian quoted Mallett, as saying.

"He reminds me of Warnie-he's got that gleam in his eye. I like the way he spins it up and he's prepared to take a bit of a risk," he added.

Smith was earlier called up to the Australian Test side to cover for spinner Nathan Hauritz, who was in doubt for Boxing Day Test against Pakistan, but Hauritz managed to recover. (ANI)

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