Parliamentary committee’s report on racism in cricket to be published on Friday
A parliamentary committee report on cricket’s racism crisis is due to be published on Friday.
The cross-party Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) committee heard powerful testimony from former Yorkshire player Azeem Rafiq in November last year and said it will set out its findings later this week.
Yorkshire accepted in September last year there was “no question” Rafiq had faced racial harassment and bullying during his time at the club, as they published a summary of the findings and recommendations of an independent report which got under way almost a year earlier.
However, the county faced significant backlash for their decision not to publish the full report, or to take disciplinary action against any individuals based on the report.
The ECB withdrew Yorkshire’s right to host lucrative international matches at Headingley, while the DCMS committee launched its own inquiry into Yorkshire’s handling of Rafiq’s allegations.
On the same day the committee heard from Rafiq, it also heard from the current and former chairs of Yorkshire – Lord Patel and Roger Hutton – and from England and Wales Cricket Board chief executive Tom Harrison.
Rafiq said attempts to raise complaints about the discriminatory treatment he faced at Yorkshire fell on deaf ears, before an investigation was finally launched in October 2020.
Chief executive Mark Arthur resigned four days before Rafiq’s appearance before the committee, while Yorkshire announced on December 3 that director of cricket Martyn Moxon and head coach Andrew Gale were among 16 members of staff who had been dismissed.
Lord Patel said on November 8 that the county had settled a separate employment tribunal claim from Rafiq.
The Independent Commission for Equity in Cricket (ICEC), which is looking at racism and discrimination within the game, said it was “inundated” with more than 2,000 responses in the fortnight after it opened a call for evidence on November 9.
On November 29, the ECB published a game-wide 12-point plan to tackle discrimination, with Harrison admitting the sport had been hit by an “earthquake” following the allegations of racism at county level from Rafiq and other players.
The plan includes a governance review of the ECB, which will consider whether the sport needs an independent regulator. The effectiveness of its oversight of Yorkshire’s handling of the Rafiq investigation was questioned by the DCMS committee.
The game-wide plan will also tackle dressing-room culture, attempt to remove any barriers that exist in the talent pathway and endeavour to make cricket a more inclusive environment for players and spectators.
Organisations have also been set targets for board diversity to include 30 per cent female or locally representative ethnicity by April. Compliance will be subject to a “comply or explain” provision.
ECB central funding could be withheld where equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) minimum standards are not met.
Jos Buttler admits he needs to find his rhythm as England lose to South Africa
The hosts won the second ODI by five wickets to clinch the series in Bloemfontein.
Temba Bavuma hits hundred as South Africa secure ODI series win over England
The Proteas chased down 343 at Bloemfontein to go 2-0 up in the three-match series.
Jos Buttler and Harry Brook give England hope of levelling ODI series
England reached 342 for seven against South Africa, with Buttler making 94 and Brook 80.
Jason Roy was never ready to ‘roll over’ despite year of setbacks and low points
Roy has for so long been England’s pacesetter at the top of the order but lost his place in the side.
England batter Jason Roy emotional after return to form in South Africa defeat
Roy’s slump with the bat led to him being dropped ahead of England’s T20 World Cup-winning campaign last year.
Jofra Archer will ‘get better and better’ but England batting needs more bite
Archer took one for 81 on a hot and sunny afternoon in Bloemfontein.
England beaten by South Africa in first ODI despite blistering Jason Roy century
Roy scored 113 off just 91 balls but South Africa ran out winners by 27 runs.
England reach Women’s Under-19 T20 World Cup final after winning thriller
With Australia 96 for nine chasing 100, the England captain trapped Maggie Clark lbw to send her side through to face India in the final.
Jofra Archer toils for little reward as South Africa set England 299 to win ODI
Archer believes he is at about “80 per cent” fitness so some rust was inevitable.
Women’s T20 World Cup in South Africa to have all-female match officials
Three match referees and 10 umpires will form the 13-strong team.