'Head of state' levels of security for Aussies

Bangladesh promise security akin to what's afforded visiting world leaders - and the England cricket team - for possible two-Test tour

Bangladesh would provide the highest level of security for Australia's cricketers if they tour in August-September, organisers said Wednesday.

"What is usually reserved for a visiting head of state will be provided to them," Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) chief executive Nizamuddin Chowdhury told AFP.

He made the comments as Cricket Australia's head of security Sean Carroll visited Dhaka to oversee plans for the tour, proposed for two Tests in the capital Dhaka and Chittagong.

Australia have not played a Test in the country since Ricky Ponting's team visited Dhaka in 2006, just six years after Bangladesh were granted Test status. Jason Gillespie memorably hit a double century in that Test series after being sent in as nightwatchman. Australia did also travel to Dhaka for a three-match one-day international series in 2011.


Jason Gillespie celebrates his double ton in 2006 // Getty

Australia were scheduled to play two Tests in Bangladesh in October 2015 but the tour was cancelled amid security fears after attacks by Islamist extremists.

Australia also refused to send their junior team to last year's Under-19 World Cup in Dhaka.

Bangladesh successfully hosted the England cricket team last year, drawing the Test series 1-1.


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"We have guaranteed that the security, which was given to England cricket team last year, similar arrangement will be made for the Australian team," Chowdhury said.

"If there is any additional requirement needed, we are ready to provide that."

Carroll visited Bangladesh in October during England's month-long tour which came just months after an attack on a Dhaka cafe in which 22 people, mostly foreigners, were killed.

Bangladesh home minister and top security and police chiefs briefed Carroll on the planned steps for the tour on Tuesday.

"We are looking forward to working with the Bangladesh authorities and the BCB to make sure there is a very successful tour going ahead in August," Carroll told local reporters.

He said he was "satisfied" with Bangladesh's security plans for England last year and was now working to ensure a "rigorous security plan" for Australia.

The tour has not yet been officially confirmed by Bangladesh or Australia authorities, but reports claimed the the first Test would be played in Chittagong from August 27 and the second in Dhaka from September 4 after the Eid religious holiday. One three-day tour match could precede the first Test.

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