Yorkshire have confirmed Rana Naved-ul-Hasan, the Pakistani fast bowler, will be available to play for them in the 2008 season. Naved-ul-Hasan's participation was in doubt after he signed up for the unsanctioned Indian Cricket League (ICL).
Meanwhile, another ICL player from Pakistan, Mushtaq Ahmed has been given the go-ahead to appear for Sussex. In Mushtaq's case, the confirmation was a mere formality, as the Pakistan board had issued a second No Objection Certificate (NOC), which the county had forwarded to the England board.
Yorkshire revealed in a statement that the decision on Naved-ul-Hasan had been conveyed to them after protracted negotiations between the England and Pakistan boards. The move means the PCB has issued an NOC for Naved-ul-Hasan to play in England's county season. It had been thought the PCB would refuse an NOC in view of his ICL links, and even when Mushtaq was granted it last week, it was believed that was not relevant to Naved-ul-Hasan as he had played international cricket more recently.
Naved-ul-Hasan's registration with Yorkshire is subject to his obtaining a valid work permit, which the county believes will not be a hurdle given his previous spells at Sussex. "I have maintained throughout the last few weeks that I would be allowed to play cricket for Yorkshire and that my participation in the Indian Cricket League would not get in the way of that dream," Naved-ul-Hasan said. "I am not contracted to the PCB and could not see why they should wish to prevent me from playing the game I love in Yorkshire."
Yorkshire have said that they will give the player time and assistance to recover from the shoulder injury he sustained while playing for Sussex at the end of the 2007 season. He has been bowling for the Lahore Badshahs in the ICL, but Yorkshire will take no chances. "We are conscious that he needs time to fully recover from his shoulder injury, which is why we have Morne Morkel for the early weeks of the season, but a fully fit Rana will be a huge boost," Martyn Moxon, the Yorkshire coach, said. "He has proved in India recently that he can bowl and take wickets but we want to be satisfied that he can also cope with the demands of fielding, especially throwing, before we play him in the first XI.
"He is a very determined man and his desire to play for this club and cut through all of the politics involved, has been particularly impressive."