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Page last updated at 11:34 GMT, Sunday, 11 October 2009 12:34 UK

Strauss may miss Bangladesh tour

Andrew Strauss
Strauss guided England to Ashes glory in the summer

England captain Andrew Strauss has admitted he might not participate in this winter's tour to Bangladesh.

Strauss has barely had a break since being named Test and one-day skipper in January and may be rested for a trip that follows a tour of South Africa.

"I can't guarantee anything, I don't know what's going to be happening," Strauss told BBC 5 live's Sportsweek.

"I'm not going to say I'm definitely going to be on it, I'm not going to say I'm definitely not going to be on it."

Reports have suggested the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) will give Strauss some time off after England's 80-day tour to South Africa, which begins at the start of November and finishes on 18 January. The Bangladesh tour then runs from 29 February to 24 March.

Shakib Al Hasan's side are world's bottom-ranked Test nation and have lost all four of their Test matches against England.

"We only select one tour at a time and the South Africa tour is a massive one," said Strauss.

"We've got Bangladesh in February-March so the selectors will sit down and have a look at where we are as a side after South Africa - injuries, niggles and all that sort of stuff - and we'll decide what the best course of action is."

Strauss was keen to emphasise the importance of keeping his team in good physical shape for what will be a packed year of competition.

After the tour to Bangladesh, England will contest an ICC World Twenty20 in the Caribbean before fulfilling programmes against Bangladesh and Pakistan at home and attempting to retain the Ashes in Australia.

Steve Harmison
I believe I'm one of the best five seamers available to England... my record stands up against almost anybody

Steve Harmison

And since succeeding Kevin Pietersen as captain on 7 January, Strauss has overseen a winter tour to the West Indies, followed by a home series against the same opposition, a successful Ashes campaign, a one-day series against the Australians and a run to the Champions Trophy semi-finals.

"The key is to make sure the players are reasonably fresh but at the same time you don't want to be tinkering with the side too much, so that's a balance we need to strike," he stated.

"It would be wrong to predict [I'm not going to tour Bangladesh]. The Bangladesh tour is quite a useful one for our development in terms of playing on sub-continent wickets.

"We just need to see where we are at as a side come then. We've got a couple of breaks as well - one now and one at the end of the South Africa tour."

If Strauss were to be rested after a series against South Africa that includes four Tests and five one-day internationals, Alastair Cook, currently his deputy, would be the likely replacement as captain for the trip to Bangladesh.

One player who might yet be on the tour to Bangladesh is Steve Harmison.

The Durham seamer was the most high-profile absentee from the squad picked to tour South Africa but, despite admitting he was left "confused and disappointed" by his omission, he is refusing to give up hope of an international return.

"I was expecting to be picked in the squad and I'm disappointed I wasn't," Harmison, who helped England win the Ashes after being recalled for the final Test and taking the last wicket, told the Mail on Sunday.

David O, BBC Sport

"I wanted to go out there and give everything I possibly could until I couldn't give any more.'

"I was good enough to be in the team for the biggest match of last summer, but just a few weeks later, the selectors are now saying they want to take a different route.

"I believe I'm one of the best five seamers available to England. I haven't bowled as well as I'd have liked in the last two or three years for England, but my record stands up against almost anybody.

"I'm hoping to sign a longer contract with Durham and I will concentrate on trying to help them win as many trophies as possible in the next few years and if anything changes with England, they know where I am."

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see also
England omit Harmison for SA tour
08 Oct 09 |  England
Johnson pips Strauss to top award
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Ashes glory for survivor Strauss
24 Aug 09 |  England
Strauss targets top of rankings
24 Aug 09 |  England
Strauss ready to rebuild England
08 Jan 09 |  England
Live cricket on the BBC
26 Oct 11 |  Cricket
England in South Africa 2009-10
17 Jan 10 |  England
England in UAE & Bangladesh 2010
23 Feb 10 |  Cricket

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