Player given two-day emergency visa after single entry anomaly detected upon return from Abu Dhabi
England faced even more visa problems on their tour of India after Rehan Ahmed was prevented from leaving Hirasar airport, Rajkot, because he was not in possession of the proper documentation.
sports star reported on Monday that Rehan had been banned from re-entering India after England’s mid-series break in Abu Dhabi because he only had a single entry visa. After a delay, local authorities were able to come up with a short-term solution to the problem, and England is optimistic that the problem will be completely resolved within the next 24 hours. All traveling team members and support staff were at the team hotel in Rajkot on Monday afternoon.
The issue comes weeks after Shoaib Bashir’s arrival in India was delayed by a week due to the late issuance of his visa, causing him to miss the first Test in Hyderabad. Bashir, who is of Pakistani descent, finally arrived on January 28, the fourth day of the first Test, having initially stayed in Abu Dhabi, where England had their pre-tour training camp, before returning to the UK to be sealed. the visa. He then made his debut in the second Test at Visakhapatnam.
Like Bashir, Rehan was born in England and is of Pakistani descent, but initially had no problems entering the country due to a visa he had obtained in October as a reserve for the England over-50s team at the World Cup. . As such, this was most likely an administrative oversight on the part of the ECB, given that the white-ball team had remained in India throughout their World Cup campaign, which ended in the group stage.
“The England team has been advised to process the visa again, which will happen in the next two days,” a BCCI official was quoted as saying in the paper. Hindustan Times. “The player was allowed to enter the country with the rest of the team and will report to practice on Tuesday.”
Either way, it is an issue that should not have arisen given the high-profile nature of Bashir’s ordeal and the fact that England’s six-day break in the United Arab Emirates between the second and third Tests, which begins on Thursday, had been on the billboard. for months.
Ollie Robinson revealed earlier on Monday that he only received his visa on the morning England initially flew to Hyderabad from Abu Dhabi last month, having heard the previous night from team manager Wayne Bentley that a paperwork error had caused a delay. “He said, ‘You’ve been denied a visa’ or something like that,” Robinson said on his podcast. chat balls.
“There was a mistake at the ECB; I think they must have put a wrong initial, or a letter must have been wrong. It wasn’t approved. He told me: ‘You’re not going to come to India, you have to do it.'” Stay here another night… it could be two nights, it could be three nights, I don’t know how long it will take.’ Luckily, I woke up in the morning to a nice message from Wayne saying ‘the visa is here.'”
Rehan has featured in both matches of the series so far, taking eight wickets at 36.37 and scoring 70 runs at 17.80, which included a cameo of 23 at number 3 in England’s unsuccessful chase of 399 in the second Test.
Vithushan Ehantharajah is associate editor of ESPNcricinfo