By Dan Harrison
Andreas Weimann has been handed his first senior international call-up for Austria's World Cup qualifying double-header against Kazakhstan.
Weimann's impressive form for Villa has been recognised by Austria national team coach Marcel Koller, who has named the striker in his 23-man squad.
Austria are looking to kickstart their World Cup qualification campaign when they face Kazakhstan in Astana on Friday October 12 and again in Weimann's home city of Vienna on Tuesday October 16.
Koller's team lost 2-1 to Germany in their opening Group C fixture.
They find themselves in a tough qualification group which also includes Sweden, Republic of Ireland and Faroe Islands.
Weimann is the only new face in the squad for the two Kazakhstan fixtures.
It is a deserved reward for the 21-year-old striker, who has featured six times for Villa this term and played a starring role in the Capital One Cup victory over Barclays Premier League champions Manchester City last week.
The academy graduate was prolific in front of goal for Villa's youth and reserve sides after joining the club as a 16-year-old.
His first senior appearance came as a substitute in the Premier League win over West Ham United on the opening day of the 2010-11 season.
But he well and truly announced his arrival on the top-flight stage last term.
Weimann's first Villa goals were ones to savour.
A last-gasp strike against Fulham at Villa Park in February gave the claret and blues a dramatic 1-0 win.
This was followed up with a wonderful long-range effort against Stoke City which was later voted as Goal of the Season.
Weimann also walked away from the club's end-of-season awards ceremony with the Young Player of the Year gong.
After impressing for Austria U21s over the past two seasons, Weimann has been elevated to the senior national squad.
He will compete with Werder Bremen's Marko Arnautovic, Martin Harnik of Stuttgart, and Trabzonspor forward Marc Janko for a place in attack.
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