Bangladesh news April 3, 2013

Zimbabwe tour a test of our progress, says Mushfiqur

Bangladesh captain Mushfiqur Rahim said that his side's progress can be measured by their performance in the forthcoming tour to Zimbabwe. This is the first time that Mushfiqur will lead the side against the lesser-ranked opposition and he stressed on the importance of the tour for the team.

"How far we have improved as a team can be determined in Zimbabwe," Mushfiqur said after Bangladesh arrived after their tour of Sri Lanka. "We are ready to take up the challenge. We don't have a good record in Harare where we lost the Test match in 2011. It is our duty to change the record, by taking forward the consistency that we have found in Sri Lanka."

Bangladesh play two Tests, three ODIs and two Twenty20s in a month-long tour which starts on April 17. There will be a short camp ahead of the tour, although no practice matches have been scheduled so far. Bangladesh have never won a Test in Zimbabwe, losing four of the five matches played there. The defeat in Harare in 2011 cost Shakib Al Hasan his captaincy. Their ODI record is better with 12 wins in 27 matches played in Zimbabwe.

The team was given a warm welcome on their return to Dhaka - a reaction to the drawn Test in Galle and the 1-1 draw in the ODI series - and the results look significant given the number of players who have suffered injuries since February. Mushfiqur said the absence of key players spurred on those who were fit to play.

"We lost players at the start of the series and were told that we hardly have a chance of doing well, with a second-string side," he said. "We were keen to do well as a result. So we were doubly motivated."

Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo's Bangladesh correspondent. He tweets here