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Pak players issued visas for Hockey India League

January 11, 2013 20:01 IST

The Indian High Commission issued visas to the nine Pakistani players bound for the inaugural Hockey India League, starting next week, officials said.

"We have issued visas to the nine Pakistani players bound for Hockey India League today," an official of the High Commission said on Friday.

The High Commission had, on Thursday, said it had received the visa applications of the nine Pakistani players and would issue the visas "as quickly as possible".

The nine players are expected to leave for India on Saturday, Pakistani sources said.

The nine players are Mohammed Rizwan Jr, Mohammed Rizwaan Sr (Delhi Wave Riders), Sayeed Kashif Shah (Punjab Warriors), Shafqat Rasool, Mohammed Irfan (Ranchi Rhinos), Mahmood Tousiq, Mahmood Rashid, Fareed Ahmed and Imran Butt (Mumbai Magicians).

The Pakistani players were bought by four of the five franchises during the HIL players' auction in New Delhi on December 16.

The much-anticipated five-team league is scheduled to begin on January 14 in Delhi and will conclude in Ranchi on February 10.

Earlier, a question mark had cropped up over the participation of the Pakistan players when none of the nine players contracted with four HIL franchisees arrived in the country with just a few days remaining for the start of the tournament.

According to media reports, the visas of the players could have been put on hold because of the alleged killing of two Indian soldiers by the Pakistani armed forces at the LOC on Tuesday.