Oram relishing Australia tour

New Zealand's in-form all-rounder Jacob Oram told how he is relishing his team's tour of Australia next month.

updated: October 18, 2008 17:19 IST
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New Zealand's in-form all-rounder Jacob Oram told how he is relishing his team's tour of Australia next month.

New Zealand are due to meet their international neighbour in two Tests, five one-dayers and a Twenty20 match.

Tours to India and Australia "are the toughest and define what you are in cricket," Oram said after being declared man-of-the-series in his team's 2-1 win over Bangladesh here on Tuesday.

"It is always an inspiration to do well against Australia," said Oram, who said New Zealand would take the momentum gained on their current tour of Bangladesh to the tougher challenge Down Under.

New Zealand recovered well after suffering their first one-day defeat against Bangladesh on Thursday, winning the next two games to take a series in which Oram is credited with playing a big part.

The tall 30-year-old from Central District hit a fighting 57 in his team's lowest one-day total against Bangladesh -- 201-9 in the opening match in Dhaka on Thursday. Bangladesh won by seven wickets.

Oram then scored a match-winning unbeaten 75 and took 2-23 to inspire New Zealand to a series-levelling 75-run win in the second match -- also in Dhaka -- on Saturday.

The big-hitting left-hander flopped with the bat in the third match, making just three but made amends by taking two crucial wickets in his incisive first bowling spell. He finished with 2-16 off eight overs.

Oram said the first match defeat was a wake-up call for New Zealand.

"I don't think it was unexpected because we always knew Bangladesh have been good in their conditions but we did not panic," said Oram who disagreed not whitewashing Bangladesh was a big disappointment.

Had the Black Caps won 3-0 they would have improved to second from four in the world rankings.

"It would have been nice but we are not going to lose sleep on not being number two. In fact I don't know who is number two at the moment," said Oram of the ODI rankings topped by Australia and followed by South Africa.

England are third followed by New Zealand, India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, the West Indies, Bangladesh and Ireland.