Ahmed cleared for Ashes after successful Oz citizenship vote

Updated: Jun 20, 2013, 10:39 AM IST

Sydney: Bringing a ray of hope to Australia`s Ashes prospects, leg-spinner Fawad Ahmed has reportedly cleared the final hurdle to be eligible for the looming series in England after legislation that allows him to be granted a passport successfully passed through the Senate.

The Pakistan-born asylum seeker is touring with the Australia A squad in England but can now officially be selected for the Ashes after amendments to the Citizenship Act were given the green light by passing through both the houses of parliament.

Ahmed will have a chance to make a final impression on selectors when he turns out for the A team against Gloucestershire at Bristol in a match starting on Friday despite being named in an Australia A squad to tour South Africa and Zimbabwe starting in July, a visit that clashes with much of the Ashes tour.

The inclusion of Ahmed would also ramp up pressure on the team`s incumbent spinner Nathan Lyon , who was dropped for the second Test on the tour of India in March but bounced back well with a fine performance in the final match in Delhi to re-affirm his standing as the country`s top spinner.