The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) has criticized former Yorkshire chairman Colin Graves for saying incidents of racism at the county club were “jokes” in nature. ECB has shown a no-nonsense attitude toward racial discrimination in the past.
Graves made his comments on Sky Sports News that he never witnessed racism during his time at the club from 2012 to 2015. Graves served as Yorkshire chairman at a time when there was racial discrimination against former player Azeem Rafiq’s time in the club that brought a lot of discredit to the historic club.
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The club back then did not address the issue of racism and the use of discriminatory language. The ECB in a statement stood by its position on racial differences, saying the board was not strict enough to bring up the case of Azeem Rafiq during his tenure.
Also read: Azeem Rafiq claims he was forced to leave England after being abused for criticizing racism
ECB statement on Colin Graves
“We are disappointed to see the comments made by Colin Graves about the historical racist issues at Yorkshire County Cricket Club. We must never again hear stories like Azeem Rafiq’s, where racist slurs are used as part of normalized everyday language.”
“These events, along with many problems experienced by Azeem and others during his time in Yorkshire, have been confirmed more than once, including during proceedings overseen by the Cricket Disciplinary Committee.”
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“We vehemently disagree that this is ‘just a joke’ and believe that any discussion to that effect should be stopped immediately. Racism is not a joke. Yorkshire is of great importance to cricket in England and Wales with a deep history and the ability to inspire and connect all cricket fans.
“They are currently working hard to resolve their financial and cultural challenges and the club and its new management have our full support.” the ECB said in its statement.
Also read: Racism scandal forces Azeem Rafiq to leave England
Meanwhile, Graves in a recent interview said that issues of racial differences were never raised with him during his tenure as Yorkshire chairman.
“When I was president of the club when some of these allegations were made, I can tell you now that nothing was raised within the club. And I ran the club open doors as president, the players could come to see me if they had problems and they did it on a regular basis. Colin Graves said.
Also Read: Yorkshire Accepts Racism Accusations Over Destroying Evidence In Azeem Rafiq Scandal
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