Cricket Australia selectors have announced a 15-member Test squad for their Bangladesh tour. The Aussies will be playing two Test matches starting from 9 October.
Steve Smith will be leading the side in this tour, his first full-length assignment as the captain of the Australian team after Michael Clarke's retirement from international cricket.
Glenn Maxwell, Joe Burns and Usman Khawaja have made it to the Australian Test squad for the Bangladesh tour; Cameron Bancroft and Andrew Fekete are the surprise picks. Bancroft will be replacing David Warner who is injured and will be missing the forthcoming tour.
Fekete has apparently impressed his skipper with his performance recently in India.
"I haven't seen a great deal of him to be quite honest. I heard he bowled extremely well in India for the 'A' stuff there and there's no doubt that the conditions are likely to be quite similar. I think he reverses the ball quite well and hopefully that will be one of our strengths that we'll be able to do well in Bangladesh and he certainly provides that option," Smith was quoted as saying by Cricket Australia.
Khawaja had come to India as the captain of the Australia A squad last month and was in impeccable form with the willow. Head coach Darren Lehmann was impressed with his series of good scores and Lehmann said the batsman was always under the selectors' radar.
"He has to just go and play and let his technique and his results and experiences do the rest. He'll get a good run at it. He's been in and out of the side a little bit and only played a few games here and there, but to give him a good run at it and see how he goes would be exciting for the coaching group but also exciting for him and the team. If you nail down that spot it will be fantastic for us going forward," said Lehmann.
Meanwhile, the inclusion of Maxwell would mean that he is being considered as an off-spinning all-rounder and is likely to come in handy in the sub-continent conditions, both with the bat and the ball. Maxwell, who has played only three Test matches in the baggy green, is happy to be back and don the Test cap once again.
"It seems I'm a bit of a sub-continent specialist at the moment," Maxwell said. "Hopefully I can turn that into just a Test specialist and stay in that squad. It's a place where I want to be and I want to be in all three formats. And while I'm hitting the ball really well in one-day cricket I want to take that over into the red-ball stuff and hopefully stay there for a long time."
The spin department will be handled by Nathan Lyon and Stephen O'Keefe. Maxwell will add to the spinning options for Smith. Josh Hazlewood and Mitchell Johnson have been rested for the tour.
Australia's Test Squad for Bangladesh Tour: Steve Smith (c), Adam Voges (vc), Cameron Bancroft, Joe Burns, Patrick Cummins, Andrew Fekete, Usman Khawaja, Nathan Lyon, Mitchell Marsh, Shaun Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Peter Nevill, Stephen O'Keefe, Peter Siddle, Mitchell Starc.