England’s uncapped right-arm off-spinner Shoaib Bashir who has accumulated plenty of praise from former English cricketers, was left stranded in Abu Dhabi due to visa issues as the rest of his teammates and coaching staff flew to Hyderabad and began practicing for the 5-match Test series starting from January 25.
Shoaib Bashir reportedly could not take the flight to India along with the rest of the England team due to a delay in his visa paperwork. The youngster is currently awaiting the heads up from authorities to reach Hyderabad as soon as possible while the rest of the team has already hit the ground for practice.
Bashir is among the 4 spinners picked up by England for the Test series along with Jack Leach, Rehan Ahmed, and Tom Hartley. Leach is the most experienced spinner among them but there can’t be doubts raised about the qualities of other spinners.
Especially the Surrey-born spinner Shoaib Bashir who experienced what it’s like to practice with the national team for the first time during England’s 11-day camp in Abu Dhabi. Although many are doubtful about Bashir’s quality and efficiency, there is also a positive talk around him.
His high release point and ability to turn the ball are being highlighted time in and time out. Former left-arm off-spinner Monty Panesar even claimed that Indian batters will struggle against him because of his line length and smartness in forcing batters to drag them out of the crease and stretch their arms to play shots.
He hasn’t played many First class games either, playing just 6 games and picking 10 wickets with a bowling average of 3.30. But the latest visa setback has raised concerns over his participation but Brendon McCullum claimed that there are no reasons to panic as BCCI is working alongside the Indian government to get him to India as soon as possible.
“Bash (Bashir) will join us hopefully tomorrow as well. He’s got a couple of issues with his visa coming through. We’re confident on the back of the help from the BCCI and the Indian government that will sort itself out pretty quickly as well.” – McCullum said.
Brendon McCullum Claims Shoaib Bashir Has Fitted In Perfectly
While speaking about the visa issue of Shoaib Bashir, head coach Brendon McCullum whose philosophy of Bazball will be tested for the first time in India, claimed that he is convinced with what he has seen from the 20-year-old off-spinner.
McCullum claimed that the amount of time he practiced with the senior team in Abu Dhabi is going to get him rewards and also expressed his hope that Shoaib Bashir’s visa issue is sorted quickly so that he can experience what a real International Test series feels like.
“It’s a process we need to go through. We’re pretty confident that we’re close. The time that Bash had with the squad over in Abu Dhabi, where he fitted in seamlessly, will serve him greatly. We’ve got a bit of support out there for him so he’s not on his own. We’re hoping the news will come through today that his visa has been approved, then we’ll get him to sink his teeth into this series.” – McCullum concluded.