Bangladesh relish chance against new-look Aussies
Bangladesh captain Mushfiqur Rahim said his side faces its best chance yet of defeating Australia with the visitors fielding a relatively inexperienced side for the Test series next month.
Australia is grappling with huge changes after ex-skipper Michael Clarke, Brad Haddin, Ryan Harris, Chris Rogers and Shane Watson all retired during the Ashes Test tour.
The new-look Australian squad arrives in Dhaka on September 28 including two uncapped players in 30-year-old paceman Andrew Fekete and 22-year-old batsman Cameron Bancroft.
Rahim said Test minnows Bangladesh would have been competitive even if Australia had been packed with formidable veterans, but their chances of snatching victory are now good.
“I don’t think there will be a better opportunity to beat Australia,” Rahim told reporters in Dhaka late on Monday.
Bangladesh will host Australia for the first Test from October 9-13 in Chittagong and for the second from October 17-21 in Dhaka.
Rahim pointed to recent successes against South Africa, India and Pakistan at home in one-day international series which have propelled Bangladesh to sixth in the ODI world rankings.
“The main thing was that we have played good and consistent cricket this year and that’s why the victories have come. So our main target will be to keep the focus that we have kept this year,” he said.
Rahim said he hoped Bangladesh, which has a poor record in Tests, could carry their ODI form into the longer version of the game.
“The kind of cricket we are playing right now, if we can play to the best of our ability, a victory won’t be impossible,” he said.
“Tests may be different than one-dayers, but at least our expectations have risen,” he said.
Bangladesh have played and lost four Tests against Australia in the past, three of them by an innings margin.