Four members of Afghanistan U-19 WC squad head to UK, urged to travel back home

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Four members of Afghanistan U-19 WC squad head to UK, urged to travel back home

Four members of the Afghanistan U-19 WC squad have chosen to fly to the United Kingdom instead of returning to Afghanistan with their teammates.

The four members are currently in London and their transit visas are set to expire on February 8, reported ESPNcricinfo. Afghanistan had finished fourth in the recently-concluded U19 World Cup. Currently, it is not known whether the four members are seeking asylum in the UK.

The Afghanistan Cricket Board has also been silent on the issue. However, the number of calls requesting that the members return home has increased.

A transit visa allows a person to stay in the Country for no more than 48 hours, as per UK government regulations.

More than a million Afghans, including at least one past president, bureaucrats, athletes, and citizens, fled the nation as soon as the Taliban took power last year.

Raees Ahmadzai, a former Afghanistan player who served as the head coach during the World Cup, has expressed his desire that the players reconsider their choice and return to the country.

“They received my messages. But they have not responded yet. I told them Afghanistan needs them. Sports and cricket have done a lot for Afghanistan. The support we got during the World Cup was amazing, unbelievable. Sometimes when you do things for your country, it will mean a lot for you in your whole life,” ESPNcricinfo quoted Ahmadzai as saying.

India won the U19 World Cup on Saturday after defeating England in the final. This was India’s fifth U19 World Cup title.

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