Spinner Nathan Lyon is hopeful the selectors will afford the Test XI a second spinner come Australia's series opener against India later this month.

Lyon has been the team's lone specialist spinner for the bulk of his 18-month career, including last year's home series against the Indians, which brought him a mere seven wickets in three matches at the lowly average of 41.57.

The makeup of the 17-man squad for 2013's return visit, however, suggests the 25-year-old will cherish the complementary services of a fellow spinner in conditions expected to prove largely low and slow.

Left-armer Xavier Doherty is the leading candidate to partner Lyon, while all-rounder Glenn Maxwell boasts an outside chance of a debut. Leg-spinner Steven Smith and the uncapped Ashton Agar, meanwhile, will perform peripheral roles during the four-Test tour.

"Hopefully there'll be an opportunity where two spinners will be able to go out on the field together for Australia. I personally think so, that two spinners should play. It's going to be a big challenge for all of us in the different conditions over here," said Lyon.

"We saw with India, they played four spinners in the last Test against England, in the drawn fourth Test in Nagpur. There's five spinners with Steve Smith, Glenn Maxwell, Xavier Doherty, Ashton Agar and myself. It's going to be a good challenge for all of us and it's going to be really good pushing each other along for spots in the first Test side."