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Successful Bangladesh seek more cricket in Australia

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19th June, 2019
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Bangladesh captain Mashrafe Mortaza says his team should have the chance to tour Australia more often, labelling their 16-year Test absence “disappointing”.

Australia’s World Cup clash with Bangladesh marks just the 10th match between the two teams in any format in the past decade.

According to the Futures Tour Program (FTP), Australia are due to play three Twenty20s in Bangladesh later this year, before a two-Test series in the first half of next year.

However, Bangladesh’s absence from Australia is far more significant with the exception of the 2015 World Cup.

They last played Tests in the country in 2003 in Darwin and Townsville, while they were clean swept in a three-match one-day series in 2008.

The team were meant to play a two-match Test series in the winter of 2018, but that was eventually cancelled.

There are no Bangladesh Tests scheduled in Australia in the current FTP through to 2023.

“Since Darwin I haven’t played any Test cricket in Australia. It’s really disappointing, I know, as a Test nation,” Mortaza said.

“You can learn a lot of things when you’re travelling, that sort of part of the world like Australia, England, New Zealand and obviously South Africa.

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“So there’s so many things we can learn, especially as an Asian team.

“It’s always disappointing when that sort of thing happens.

“It’s all about negotiating, I think. If our cricket boards and Australian cricket board can negotiate each other, then it might be possible.”

Mortaza is one of just four players in Bangladesh’s World Cup squad to have played in Australia.

Generally regarded as a minnow in their early years, Bangladesh emerged as a contender at the World Cup with wins over West Indies and South Africa before the Australia clash.

They shocked Australia in 2005 with a five-wicket win in Cardiff, as well as claiming their first Test victory over the team in 2017.

“It’s been a nice memory (beating Australia in 2005),” Mortaza said

“I can remember everything what we did in that particular day and night.

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“That night suddenly, when the limousine was coming in front of the hotel and everyone was inside.”