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Former Formby all rounder stars at Hobart
Friday 19th November 2010

Those of you in the Liverpool Competition fraternity staying up overnight during the last few days watching Australia A v England from Hobart, will have noticed a familiar face in the Australia A team, that of Stephen O'Keefe.

He played for Formby in 2007 as an unknown 22 year old on a New South Wales scholarship and quickly became a favourite with his team mates as a star in the making. In 19 matches, he scored 801 runs at an average of 47.11 and claimed 69 wickets at an average of 11.43 with bests of 9-54 at home to Highfield and 9-56 at Southport Trinity.

In the current match at Hobart, with just nine first class matches behind him, Stephen saved Australia A from humiliation at 118-6 by adding 59 for the seventh wicket with Steve Smith (59) and then 45 for the ninth with Mark Cameron (9) before being last out for a valuable 66 with 6x4s and 2x6s.

When it came to bowling, he did his credentials no harm at all by getting the wicket of Alastair Cook and then bowling Kevin Pietersen for 5 just 6 overs later, to give the batsman another dimissal against a slow left armer bowling around the wicket. With the wickets of Tim Bresnan and Chris Tremlett to close the innings. O'Keffe finished with 4-88 from 24 overs, 3 of them maidens.

CricInfo - August 2010

A dramatic 2010 off season ended in Stephen O'Keefe fielding for the Test team at Lord's and playing a Twenty20 international. O'Keefe, a left arm orthodox spinner, had only played a handful of games for his state before he was picked for Australia A, benefiting from injuries to Jon Holland and Jason Krejza. After taking 7 for 35 and scoring 61 and 47 in a first-class affair against Sri Lanka A, he was soon flying to England to join the national team thanks to Nathan Hauritz's foot injury. He was surprised to play in the Twenty20 but made the most of the opportunity, finishing with 3 for 29 against Pakistan, and stayed with the squad for the Tests.

An all rounder from the Hawkesbury club, he made both his Pura and ING Cup débuts in 2005-06. On his first class entry against Tasmania he earned two wickets and finally played in the one day side after his initial selection the previous summer ended in a washout. Another four FR Cup matches came in 2007-08 and he impressed on the grade scene with 36 victims at 18.19. There were seven FR Cup appearances the following summer, with six useful wickets and 75 runs, while he also played his first three Twenty20 contests. Born in Malaysia, where his father was working for the air force, he returned home as a toddler and grew into an Australia Under 19 representative in 2003-04. He finished 2009-10 in the Blues' Shield side, taking 15 wickets in five matches, and will continue to battle with the state's growing batch of spinners for future action.