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Australia's Test cricket team gets new faces for Bangladesh tour

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NEXT month’s tour of Bangladesh will be a changing of the guard for Australia’s top order, but the pace bowling department is also facing a shake-up.

Today’s announcement of a 15-man squad for the two-Test tour of Bangladesh includes uncapped pair Cameron Bancroft, 22, and Andrew Fekete, 30.

Bancroft, the Western Australia opener who made a double hundred against NSW last summer and 150 in Chennai against India A in July, is someone most fans might have heard mentioned before.

Fekete, the Tasmania right-armer who was the leading quick in Shield ranks last summer with 37 wickets at 24.10, is more of a mystery. His Test prospects may be slim in the short term, however.

Bancroft, Ashes flop Shaun Marsh, two-Test youngster Joe Burns who was overlooked for the Ashes tour, and Usman Khawaja appear to be fighting it out for the top three spots in the batting order.

Khawaja, who hasn’t added to his nine Test appearances since 2013, looks ready for the vital No.3 role.

Australia will certainly hope so, as skipper Steve Smith appears to be considering moving himself back outside the top three.

 

Hard-working seamer Peter Siddle, recalled for the fifth Ashes Test at The Oval last month after fearing his international career was over, could be set to lead the pace attack with Mitchell Starc and Pat Cummins.

However, three quicks could be one too many in Bangladesh, with pace-bowling allrounder Mitchell Marsh set to play an important role at No.6.

With quicks Mitchell Johnson and Josh Hazlewood rested and Starc weary, Siddle could be crucial.

Legspinner Fawad Ahmed, so dominant last summer for Victoria, has been left out of the Test side for the West Indies and England tours and now is out of the squad completely.

The 33-year-old Ahmed, who has played three ODI games for Australia, is facing the prospect of a Test career that never quite happened after failing to impress during limited opportunities on the Ashes tour.

NSW left-arm tweaker Steve O’Keefe has been named alongside Australia’s No.1 spinner Nathan Lyon in the squad, with off-spinning all-rounder Glenn Maxwell providing another spin option.

Much interest will surround the possible selection of Victoria’s duo Maxwell and Siddle for the two Tests on October 9-13 in Chittagong and October 17-21 in Dhaka.

For different reasons, they could play major roles in the series.

 

Siddle, the reliable meat-and-potatoes seamer Australia lacked at times during the Ashes, and Maxwell, the outrageously talented all-rounder who has dazzled crowds in the ODI series in England, will be pushing hard for selection.

The re-emergence of 22-year-old Cummins as a pace bowler at Test level, not having played a Test since his debut in Johannesburg in 2011, could be the most exciting thing to happen within Australia’s cricket ranks.

The squad is: Steve Smith (capt), Adam Voges, Cameron Bancroft, Joe Burns, Pat Cummins, Andrew Fekete, Usman Khawaja, Nathan Lyon, Mitchell Marsh, Shaun Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Peter Nevill, Steve O’Keefe, Peter Siddle, Mitchell Starc.

Here's the complete schedule of Australia tour of Bangladesh, 2015.

Source : The Daily Telegraph



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