England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) and cricket bosses are all set to have a meeting on Friday at The Oval to discuss Azeem Rafiq’s, Racism Matter.
In the meeting, the chairs of the 18 first-class counties will be joined by representatives of the 21 non-first class cricket boards, the Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) and the National Counties Cricket Association.
Notably, Former cricketer Azeem Rafiq who made allegations of racism and harassment against Yorkshire County Cricket Club (YCCC), shared his harrowing experience in a parliamentary hearing in front of MPs on Tuesday in which he revealed that racial slurs were “used constantly” against him at Yorkshire County Cricket Club (YCCC).
Meanwhile, Former Yorkshire chair Roger Hutton who stepped down from his role after the matter got the limelight, has said that he had been blocked from removing senior members from the board over allegations of racism because the Colin Graves Trust rejected it. Former Yorkshire chair said that he wanted to remove them because of the failure to understand the gravity of the Azeem Rafiq situation.
“As a consequence of the failure to understand the gravity of the situation (regarding Rafiq) and failing to apologise, and particularly for their failings and to move on the recommendations,” he said.
Azeem Rafiq Apologizes For Anti-semitic Messages
Meanwhile, Rafiq sent some anti-semitic messages to another cricketer more than a decade ago, and he issued an apology statement on this matter. He stated:
“I have gone back to check my account and it is me – I have absolutely no excuses.
“I am ashamed of this exchange and have now deleted it so as not to cause further offence. I was 19 at the time and I hope and believe I am a different person today. I am incredibly angry at myself and I apologise to the Jewish community and everyone who is rightly offended by this.”
After Azeem Rafiq’s apology, Board of Deputies of British Jews President Marie Van Der Zyl said: “Azeem Rafiq has suffered terribly at the hands of racists in cricket, so he will well understand the hurt this exchange will cause to Jews who have supported him.”
“His apology certainly seems heartfelt, and we have no reason to believe he is not completely sincere.”
Also, co-chief executive of the Jewish Leadership Council Claudia Mendoza reacted to this and said:
“There’s no doubt that this is massively awkward for Azeem Rafiq but he’s taken full ownership, apologised, and undoubtedly – through his own experiences – learnt a lot about racism since then.”
Meanwhile, England opening batsman Alex Hales has also admitted that he painted his face black in a tribute to legendary rapper Tupac Shakur at a party in 2009.
“In 2009, I attended a New Year’s Eve musical tribute fancy dress party. I dressed in tribute to my musical hero, Tupac Shakur, someone who I’ve admired from childhood and, at the time, did not realise the offensive nature of this.
“I echo my statement from earlier in the week and stress how much I deplore racism and discrimination in all its forms,” Hales said quoted as on The Sun.
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