Oxford Downs hopes of playing overseas star Johann Myburgh have suffered a big setback due to a complicated dispute over his visa.

Myburgh is in the UK on a general visitor’s visa, rather than a sports visa, but the club insist it was an error with the UK Border Agency, rather than themselves.

Myburgh has a first class batting average of 44.66 as well as taking 27 wickets.

Last year, he scored 80 against a full England side, but it seems he will not be able to play for the Oxford Times Cherwell League club.

Cherwell League secretary Peter Tomlin said: “Johann Myburgh came to the UK on a general visitor’s visa, rather than a sports visa.

“Based on that, we cannot register him for the Cherwell League, it’s as simple as that.

“He could only play cricket if he entered the UK on a sports visa.

“The UK Border Agency say that there are certain exclusions to a visitor’s visa, one of them being that you cannot play sport as an amateur for an amateur club.”

It would appear that the only way Myburgh could play this year is by returning to his native South Africa and re-applying for a sports visa.

No-one at Oxford Downs was available for comment.

Meanwhile, Shipton-under-Wychwood’s overseas player Romesh Eranga has also had his registration suspended, although his situation remains less clear-cut.

Shipton initially wanted to sign Eranga on a tier five visa, which would allow them to pay the player.

Tier five visas cover working holidays and also cater for specific temporary employment opportunities such as professional sport.

But it emerged that it could take several months to arrange this visa, so the club changed tack and organised a sports visa for Eranga.

Tomlin said: “Shipton have provided us with copies of both his contract and visa, and at the moment the lawyers are examining the paperwork.”

Shipton skipper Paul Hemming said: “We are hopeful that Romesh can play for us this season. We just have to provide evidence that we had already sorted out the agreement before the league’s cut-off date for tier five players, which we have sent to them.

“So it’s just a case of waiting for a decision from the league.”

Tomlin added that the only cut-off date the league had set was February 15. Any players signed up for paid contracts before this date are still eligible for this season.