Cummins and Agar came in for particular praise from team vice-captain David Warner. (AP: AM Ahad)
Australia remains a long way off conquering the subcontinent but in Pat Cummins and Ashton Agar, they have two young men with the mental fortitude needed to thrive.
That is the assessment of vice-captain David Warner after Australia were humbled by a Bangladesh side ranked ninth in the world during the first Test in Dhaka.
The positives were few and far between for Australia as they plunged to defeat on the back of yet another Asian batting collapse.
But there was plenty to like from both Cummins and Agar, who for different reasons had spent years out of the Test frame after making phenomenal debuts as teenagers.
Speed demon Cummins got Australia off to a flying start, ripping through the Bangladesh top order to leave them 3-10 before Tamim Iqbal and Shakib Al Hasan’s match-turning partnership.
His unbeaten 33 in Australia’s doomed fourth-innings chase was just as impressive and may well have been match-winning had he not run out of partners.
David Warner (right) made it through some early nerves to lay a strong foundation. (AP: AM Ahad)
Left-arm spinner Agar also contributed with both bat and ball, scoring an unbeaten 41 in the first innings and claiming five wickets overall.
Warner, whose dashing century gave the Australians hope of reaching an imposing target, knows better than most how difficult it can be to succeed on the subcontinent.
A dominant force at home, Warner’s record in Asia is littered with failures, but he hopes the likes of Cummins and Agar can find the right formula much quicker than he did.
“There is a lot of grit and determination there,” Warner said of the duo.
“There are going to be times when it is going to be tough in these conditions in this environment.
“I’ve been there before — it is not a great place to tour if you are not doing well, so you need the support of your friends and your teammates, and more importantly, your family at home.
“It is always challenging. You find these challenges rewarding eventually when you get on top, but it is very, very hard work.
“It has taken me a long time to actually work out my game. Hopefully a lot of other players do that faster than what I have done.”