Australia optimistic about Bangladesh tour

MNA Sports Desk: Australia’s cricket authorities are optimistic that a Bangladesh tour due to start in less than a month will go ahead despite a player rebellion over pay, a senior team official said.

The scheduled two-Test series has been placed in jeopardy by the long-running dispute, which has pitted Australia’s top cricket stars against the game’s governing body.

“There is obviously a lot of work to be done. But we are hopeful and optimistic that the tour will go ahead,” Gavin Dovey, Australia cricket team manager told reporters in the Bangladesh city of Chittagong late Thursday.

The fate of the series depends on the resolution of a revenue sharing deal between Cricket Australia and players. An Australia A tour of South Africa has already been cancelled because of the dispute.

Cricket Australia said Thursday it will take the bitter row to independent arbitration if an agreement cannot be reached by early next week.

Dovey made his remarks at the end of a four-day tour by a Cricket Australia team to inspect facilities and security arrangements in the South Asian nation.

Australia are scheduled to arrive Bangladesh on August 18. The first Test is at Dhaka’s Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium on August 27-31.

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