Bangladesh will play host to Australia in a five-match T20 series, which begins on August 3, with the home side hit by key absentees.
Three of their current international squad are going to be missing for the series, as the Tigers seek their first ever 20-over success over the Aussies.
Australia head to the sub-continent having lost five of their last six T20 internationals and Justin Langer is desperate to get them back on track ahead of the upcoming World Cup, which Australia are
9/2 to win.
Trio Absence to Hit Tigers Hard
Bangladesh are unhappy that experienced batsman Mushfiqur Rahim will play no part in the series, after the rules thwarted his attempt to return to the fray.
The wicketkeeper, who has an average of 20.3 in T20 internationals, left the squad during the recent series with Zimbabwe after both his parents tested positive for Covid.
The plan was for Mushfiqur to return to the squad for the Australia challenge, but both cricket boards have agreed to include their players from their respective bio-bubbles in Zimbabwe and the West Indies.
The 34-year-old is not the only key absentee, with Tamim Iqbal – who has over 5000 T20 runs to his name – and Liton Das both out.
Tamim is currently sidelined by a knee injury, while Liton was forced to leave the camp due to family-related issues.
If the hosts are to spring a surprise, Soumya Sarkar will need a big series and he goes into the opener in good form. The 28-year-old has two half-centuries in his last three T20 international appearances.
Captain Finch the Key to Success
Australia head to Dhaka off the back of a heavy series defeat to West Indies and with an inexperienced side at this level, but knowing they have won all four previous meetings with the hosts.
The Aussies chopped and changed their batting line-up and order in the Caribbean and there is a lot of pressure on their skipper to help them progress.
Aaron Finch has played over 70 one-day internationals and showed in patches against the Windies that he could be crucial in both this series and the T20 World Cup.
It’s five years since the two sides met and Mitchell Marsh is likely to be the only survivor from that match in the Australian starting XI.
Marsh was in good nick in the Caribbean, with three half-centuries, and will be another key figure in dragging through the youngsters in the squad.
Even in the shortest version of the game, players will think some eye-catching performances might see them come into the equation for the Ashes later this year – a series which Australia are
1/2 to win.
That could apply to the Aussie bowling attack, with Riley Meredith one of those to have broken into the T20 and ODI squads this year.
The 25-year-old’s only international T20 appearance to date came in the third match of the Windies series, taking 3-48 in 3.5 overs.
*All odds correct at time of writing