Highlights

  • Shoaib Bashir returned to UK after visa delay
  • England spinner set to link up with teammates this weekend

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England spinner Shoaib Bashir finally receives India visa, will link up with squad soon | IND vs ENG

The situation previously escalated when Shoaib Bashir had to return to the UK from the UAE, reportedly due to requirements that he appear in person at the Indian High Commission for his visa processing.

England spinner Shoaib Bashir finally receives India visa, will link up with squad soon | IND vs ENG

England's young spinner Shoaib Bashir has finally been granted an Indian visa, albeit after considerable delay and intervention at the highest levels, including that of the British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak. This resolution comes amid widespread concern and media outcry in the UK, as the delay jeopardised Bashir's potential debut in the first Test against India in Hyderabad.

The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) confirmed Bashir's imminent arrival in India, stating that the spinner is expected to join his teammates over the weekend. The visa application process for Bashir, alongside his England squad members, commenced in December following the announcement of the touring party. While his colleagues received their visas promptly, enabling them to travel to India as scheduled, Bashir faced unexpected hurdles, remaining in the UAE where England had their pre-tour preparations.

The situation escalated when Bashir had to return to the UK from the UAE, reportedly due to requirements that he appear in person at the Indian High Commission for his visa processing. This delay starkly contrasts with the experience of leg-spinner Rehan Ahmed, another player of Pakistani descent in the England squad, who secured his documentation without issue, having been on standby for the World Cup in India.

England's decision to field all three specialist spinners for the opening Test underscores the potential opportunity Bashir missed to debut in Hyderabad.

England captain Ben Stokes expressed his frustration over the ordeal, particularly lamenting the impact on Bashir's introduction to the England Test team environment. "I find it particularly frustrating," Stokes remarked ahead of the first Test.

Watch: Indian captain Rohit Sharma weighs in on Shoaib Bashir's travel delay | India vs England


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