Cricket news from ESPN Cricinfo.com

Wednesday, 1 June 2016

Amir latest: Brexit fury as skilled, non-EU migrant denied work visa


There was anger from Brexit campaigners today after a skilled, non-EU migrant was denied a work visa to enter the UK. Mohammad Amir, a sportsman from a small village in Pakistan, had wanted to fill a position as a fast bowler in various locations across Britain, but has now had his application for an employment permit temporarily blocked. His place in the Pakistan side will now be taken by Essex's Dutch star Ryan ten Doeschate, who under present EU rules is, according to UKIP leader Nigel Farage, "allowed to play for whoever he likes and piss on your car windscreen."

Leave frontman Boris Johnson also waded into the debate, explaining why the snub to Amir meant Britain must adopt a points-based immigration system: "Although Mohammad is, of course, not the most skillful bowler in the world - that's Dale Anderson - he still has more than enough skill points to be allowed in as a seasonal summer worker to pick off English batsmen. But thanks to our Brussels overlords, this decent, upstanding chap will now be left at home while EU foreigners flood our stadiums."

"I'm out, am I!? Bloody terrific. Now I can control my own destiny"

As the controversy rumbled on, another leave advocate, Michael Gove, explained his views via a cricket analogy: "The present immigration set-up is ok, I guess, because it's been in place for a long time and UK employers and overseas investors know where there stand and that. But, as with cricket series, perhaps a more bureaucratic, points-based system could breathe new life into it? England might be 2-0 up in the Tests but under Andrew Strauss's new scoring scheme there's still all to play for with the T20s and ODIs still to come. So why not have that excitement in work visa applications? Amir might actually be enjoying all this uncertainty, as the bureaucratic wheels churn and his employment prospects hang in the balance. It's probably good for ticket sales as well, so let's ensure all recruiting British companies have to go through this process, for both EU and non-EU workers. It's not economically stifling in the slightest." 

Fellow Brexit supporter Sir Ian Botham, however, offered a more nuanced take, refusing to resort to simplistic, jingoistic sloganeering on such a complex and vital issue: "England should be England," he said, before attending a tedious barbecue. 

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