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The cricketing world is currently buzzing with debates and discussions surrounding the unfortunate visa controversy involving England‘s rising spinner, Shoaib Bashir. Born in Surrey with roots in Pakistan, Bashir has been ruled out of the opening Test of the highly anticipated five-match series against India due to visa complications.

Shoaib Bashir’s visa delay stirs controversy

The setback has not only stirred emotions within the England camp but has also gained attention globally, with even Australian cricket star Usman Khawaja‘s wife, Rachel Khawaja, expressing her support for the beleaguered young spinner.

ECB’s plea to BCCI and the twist in the tale

The saga began when Bashir, unable to join England’s training camp in Abu Dhabi earlier, faced visa hurdles that prevented him from arriving in India. The England Cricket Board (ECB) reached out to the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) for assistance, hopeful that a resolution could be found. However, despite initial optimism, Bashir was eventually instructed to return to the UK and handle the matter directly with the Indian High Commission.

Ben Stokes expresses frustration and devastation

England’s captain, Ben Stokes, expressed his dismay over the situation, describing it as unfortunate. He openly shared his feelings of frustration and devastation at seeing a young talent like Bashir endure such setbacks. The English media extensively covered the issue, turning it into a major talking point within the cricketing community.

Usman Khawaja’s wife Rachel extends support to Bashir

Amidst this ongoing drama, Rachel, the wife of Australian cricket sensation Khawaja, took to her Instagram story to voice her support for Bashir. She wrote, “Just an English guy born in Surrey trying to represent his country in test cricket…”

Rachel Khawaja's Instagram story on Shoaib Bashir
Rachel Khawaja’s Instagram story on Shoaib Bashir

Also READ: Top 7 highest individual scores in India vs England Tests

Deja vu for Khawaja: Visa woes on previous tours

Interestingly, Khawaja himself faced visa delays during Australia’s previous tour to India. Like Bashir, Khawaja has roots in Pakistan, which emphasizes the recurrent challenges faced by cricketers connected with Pakistan in navigating complex visa processes.

Bashir’s cricketing credentials

Bashir, who is yet to make his debut for the England cricket team, boasts a promising record in the domestic circuit. With six first-class matches and seven List-A games under his belt, he has already showcased his talent by claiming ten and three wickets in the respective formats.

Looking ahead: Anticipation for the opening Test

As cricket enthusiasts eagerly await the much-anticipated series between India and England, the focus remains on resolving Bashir’s visa issues and ensuring a smooth and fair competition. The opening battle is set to take place at Hyderabad’s Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium on Thursday, January 25, promising an exciting start to what is expected to be a fiercely contested series.

Also READ: IND vs ENG 2024 – Stats and records of India and England against each other in Test cricket


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