Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden: Ollie Robinson’s punishment over the top

The England and Wales Cricket Board has gone “over the top” by suspending Ollie Robinson over racist and sexist tweets, Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden has said.

Robinson had an impressive Test debut in the draw with New Zealand at Lord’s, picking up seven wickets in the match and making a handy 42 with the bat.

However, the start to the pace bowler’s Test career was overshadowed by the emergence of the offensive posts he sent in 2012 and 2013, when he was in his late teens.

The ECB said Robinson has been suspended from all international cricket pending the outcome of a disciplinary investigation.

Dowden said: “Ollie Robinson’s tweets were offensive and wrong.

“They are also a decade old and written by a teenager.

“The teenager is now a man and has rightly apologised. The ECB has gone over the top by suspending him and should think again.”