May 10, 2012

English cricket

Will changes in visa policy affect county cricket?

Carlyle Laurie

With changes in regulations for UK's visa policy frequently leaving cricketers with visa problems and delayed entry into the UK, Vic Marks, writing in the Guardian, says that some of the 21st century restrictions are a pity. For example, if they were applicable 40 years ago, people might not seen players like Viv Richards play county cricket.

Mitchell Starc's recent deportation from England highlight some of the pitfalls a county now has to face when hiring an overseas player in the 21st century. There are complex visa requirements and the player concerned must have fulfilled certain criteria – he has to have played a minimum number of international matches within the last year.

Then there are so many competing fixtures at international level and at the IPL so that his availability is severely reduced. So the finishing school that county cricket once offered overseas players has lost some of its lustre.

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