“I find it particularly frustrating”: Ben Stokes on Shoaib Bashir’s visa delay

Shoaib Bashir
Shoaib Bashir

HYDERABAD: Ahead of England’s five-match Test series against India, skipper Ben Stokes on Tuesday opened up on Shoaib Bashir’s visa delay and said that it is “frustrating”.

While speaking ahead of the first Test match in Hyderabad, Stokes pointed out that the England Cricket Board (ECB) announced the squad in mid-December but still Bashir was not given a visa to travel to India.

He added that this type of situation should not happen to the 20-year-old since he is yet to play his first international match.

“Especially as captain, I find it particularly frustrating. We announced that squad in mid-December, and now Bash finds himself without a visa to get here. I am more frustrated for him. I didn’t want this type of situation to be his first experience of what it’s like to be in the England Test team. I feel for him,” Stokes said as quoted by ESPNcricinfo.

Stokes added that he was not the first cricketer to go through such a situation and said that he feels “devastated” for the English bowler.

“But he’s not the first cricketer to go through this, I have played with a lot of people who have had the same issues. I find it frustrating that we have picked a player and he’s not with us because of visa issues. Especially for a young lad, I’m devastated for him. It’s a frustrating situation to be in, but a lot of people have been trying to get it through. It’s unfortunate and I’m very frustrated for him,” he added.

The 20-year-old was born in England’s Surrey and holds a British passport, but due to his Pakistani heritage, the bowler facing trouble entering India for the five-match Test series.

The five-match Test series between India and England begins on January 25 in Hyderabad with the next four matches to be played in Vizag, Rajkot, Ranchi and Dharamsala.

England Test squad for India series: Ben Stokes (C), James Anderson, Rehan Ahmed, Gus Atkinson, Jonny Bairstow, Shoib Bashir, Zak Crawley, Ben Duckett, Ben Foakes (Wk), Dan Lawrence, Tom Hartley, Jack Leach, Ollie Pope, Ollie Robinson, Joe Root, Mark Wood. (ANI)

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