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Indian govt grants Pakistan squad visas for World Cup, PCB confirms

Islamabad: After multiple delays, the Indian government on Monday issued visas for the Pakistan squad, enabling them to travel to the neighbouring country for the World Cup.

Pakistan Cricket Board spokesperson said, “Finally received a call from the Indian High Commission in Islamabad to collect the passports.”

The team is due to travel to Dubai from Lahore on September 27 before flying to Hyderabad, India, to play two warm-up matches — against New Zealand on September 29 and Australia on October 3.

Monday’s development comes hours after the PCB approached the International Cricket Council (ICC) with concerns regarding “extraordinary delays” in the issuance of Indian visas.

“We have written to ICC raising our concerns about inequitable treatment towards Pakistan and reminding them of these obligations towards the World Cup,” the spokesperson said.

He said that the board had been reminding the ICC about obligations for the last three years but it had all come down to the last two days with the national team’s first warm-up game scheduled on September 29.

“We were forced to cancel our original plan to organise team-building exercises in Dubai on the way to India. We have had to rework our plan and book new flights, but these plans are subject to issuance of visas,” the spokesperson added.

According to ESPNcricinfo, a sports news website exclusively for the game of cricket, the application for visas was rep¬o¬rtedly made over a week ago.

Due to visa delays, the team had cancelled its pre-World Cup team bonding event in Dubai.

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