Bangladesh may host Australia’s postponed Test tour in June-July next year after the planned series in 2015 was deferred due to security concerns, said officials two Boards on Wednesday.
Cricket Australia chief executive James Sutherland has confirmed that CA has recently held ‘off-line’ discussions with the Bangladesh Cricket Board and that the series has been pencilled into the international schedule for the 2017 subject to security clearances.
‘After discussions with Cricket Australia, we are at the final stages of finalising the commitment for their tour to Bangladesh next year, and we will announce the tour dates once everything is confirmed,’ Chowdhury told cricket website Cricinfo.
The two Tests could be held immediately after the 2017 Champions Trophy in England, which runs from June 1 to 18, although cricket in Bangladesh is not usually in the months between May and October, reports the website.
Australia have not played the Tigers in Test cricket since Ricky Ponting’s team toured the country in 2006, and only a handful of one-day international matches played between the nations in Darwin (2008) and Dhaka (2011) since then.
Australia were scheduled to play two Tests and a tour match in Dhaka and Chittagong last October, and had named a 15-man squad.
But 48 hours before the squad was due to fly out, CA announced that departure had been delayed ‘due to concerns about the safety and security of the Australian Test team’ based on advice received from the Australian Government’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.
A week later, Sutherland announced that the tour had been postponed following information gleaned from DFAT, the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation and CA’s internal head of security, who had visited Bangladesh and held several meetings with government high-ups.
CA subsequently decided to also withdraw the Australia men’s team from the ICC Under-19 World Cup that was staged in Bangladesh earlier this year, with Australia the only Test-playing nation absent from the tournament that was won by the West Indies.
However, Sutherland has indicated that both nations are now eyeing an opportunity to reschedule the Test series in July or September next year, either side of Bangladesh’s scheduled Test and ODI visit to Australia that is likely to be played in the nation’s far-north.
‘We’ve had discussions off-line with the Bangladesh Cricket Board,’ Sutherland said on Tuesday.
‘They know and understand that we’re absolutely committed to playing that (postponed) tour, obviously subject to security matters that we need to go through in preparation for that tour.
‘But we’re very much looking forward to getting back to Bangladesh and playing cricket over there.’
Tri-series in Ireland
In another development it was learnt through Cricinfo, Ireland is expected to host New Zealand and Bangladesh in a six-match tri-series in May 2017.
The tournament has been arranged to help New Zealand and Bangladesh acclimatise ahead of the ICC Champions Trophy, which takes place in England next June and for which Ireland – currently ranked No 11 in the world – failed to qualify.
-With New Age input