Allegations of racism see Michael Vaughan stood down from BBC radio show

County Cricket
Michael Vaughan

Michael Vaughan has been stood down from his BBC radio show on Monday night amid allegations of racism made by his former Yorkshire team-mate Azeem Rafiq.

Vaughan revealed in his Daily Telegraph column on Thursday that he had been named in a report into Rafiq’s allegations of institutional racism at the county, but categorically denied telling a group of team-mates of Asian ethnicity there were “too many of you lot, we need to do something about it”.

A new report from ESPNCricinfo says former Pakistan international all-rounder Rana Naved-ul-Hasan, who played for the county as an overseas player in 2008 and 2009, confirmed he too heard the comments.

Michael Vaughan under fire

The report also states the 43-year-old Naved-ul-Hasan is prepared to give evidence on the matter to any interested inquiry.

Rana Naved says he heard a comment alleged to have been made by former England captain Michael Vaughan, which Vaughan denies making
Rana Naved says he heard a comment alleged to have been made by former England captain Michael Vaughan, which Vaughan denies making (Chris Ison/PA)

The BBC has acted to remove Vaughan from Monday’s edition of the ‘Tuffers and Vaughan’ show on 5 Live.

“The show focuses on topical discussion around current cricketing matters and given his personal involvement, we need to ensure we maintain the impartiality of the programme,” a corporation spokesperson said.

“We remain in discussion with Michael and his team.”

Vaughan, who also works across BBC television and radio as a commentator in addition to the radio show, told the PA news agency at his home in Knutsford, Cheshire: “We’re in different times. I’ve done my piece (in the Telegraph) last night and I stand by what I say. I’ve never said anything racist in my life.

“I know that in my life, I’ve never said anything racist to anybody. So, that’s what I stand by.”

Naved-ul-Hasan didn’t want to jeopardise deals

Speaking to ESPNCricinfo in 2020, when Rafiq’s wide-ranging claims had only just become public knowledge, Rana said: “I fully support what Azeem said and this has been the case with me as well.

“I never spoke about it because, as foreigners, we were temporary and somehow I managed to accept the way it is. So I just focused on playing cricket. I never wanted to jeopardise my contracts.

“At times I used to feel bad, but I decided to ignore it because I knew I was not going to live there permanently. But I know what Azeem went through.”

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