TEENAGER Ben McDermott recently faced a barrage of full-throttle deliveries from older brother Alister, who was trying to prove his fitness for the Sheffield Shield final.
The 18-year-old wicketkeeper-batsman now has his own moment in the sun, joining Alister in the Queensland Bulls squad for next season.
While Alister has been carving out his niche in first-class cricket for several years, Ben -- who has played for the Queensland Academy of Sport -- has been rising steadily through the grades.
The son of former Test paceman Craig McDermott toured New Zealand with the Australian under-19 team last month, as both a keeper and and a batsman.
Everyone watching Ben face deliveries from Alister, in that fitness test before last season's Sheffield Shield final, realised he had a big future as a hard-hitting batsman.
Batsmen Greg Moller and Alex Kemp have been promoted to full contracts for next season, but Andrew Robinson and Wade Townsend were not retained.Fast bowler Cameron Gannon retained his contract despite being banned from bowling after biomechanical tests revealed his action was illegal.
Bulls coach Darren Lehmann said the playing group had already targeted areas to improve during the off-season.
"We had a pretty good summer, but in our post-season reviews the players all identified areas where we needed to be better," he said.
"It's going to be a big year for Australian cricket and we believe there are big opportunities to be had for our group."
Meanwhile, Australia will today announce its squad for the Champions Trophy one-day tournament, with wicketkeeper Matthew Wade tipped to be the new vice-captain.
Brad Haddin was last week named as Michael Clarke's deputy for the Ashes tour after Shane Watson stepped down from the position.
Wade has emerged as a leading contender for the one-day vice-captaincy role after losing the Test glove duties to Haddin.
XXXX GOLD QUEENSLAND BULLSCameron BOYCEJoe BURNSBen CUTTINGLuke FELDMANJason FLOROSPeter FORRESTMatthew GALECameron GANNONChris HARTLEYNathan HAURITZJames HOPESAlex KEMPUsman KHAWAJAChris LYNNAlister MCDERMOTTGreg MOLLERMichael NESERLuke POMERSBACHNathan REARDON
ROOKIESNicholas BUCHANANBen MCDERMOTTRonan MCDONALDJames PEIRSONNicholas STEVENS
CA CONTRACTEDRyan HARRIS