Sandeep Lamichhane in doubt for Hundred opening rounds after visa hitch
Nepalese legspinner awaiting clearance to play for Oval Invincibles
Sandeep Lamichhane is a doubt for the opening games of the Hundred due to visa issues.
Lamichhane, the Nepalese legspinner, is due to play for Oval Invincibles in the competition on a £60,000 deal but his availability is now uncertain. He had also been due to play for Worcestershire in the Vitality Blast earlier in the summer but was forced to pull out of his deal shortly before the tournament after delays in his visa's approval.
Lamichhane's agent confirmed to ESPNcricinfo that he has arrived in the UK and that Monday was the ninth day of a mandatory 10-day quarantine period he spent in a government-approved hotel, but that despite being allowed into the country on a Tier 5 visa, he is not permitted to play in the Hundred as things stand.
"At the moment, we're unsure," Sam Billings, the Invincibles' men's captain, said. "I obviously heard that today and fingers crossed he can get here. It's been a difficult time for a lot of players with the various restrictions and things around the world. Hopefully that can get resolved [because] he's a special talent. If not, back to the drawing board."
At this stage, the Invincibles are expected to field only two of their permitted three overseas players in their opening game against Manchester Originals on Thursday night, with Colin Ingram and Sunil Narine both in London and available for selection.
ESPNcricinfo understands that Tabraiz Shamsi, the South African left-arm wristspinner who is No. 1 in the ICC's T20I bowling rankings, has been lined up as a potential replacement in the event that Lamichhane is ruled out of the tournament altogether.
Matt Roller is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. @mroller98