Monday, November 29, 2021

BBC under pressure after Adil Rashid endorsed Michael Vaughan’s racist comment allegation

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Vaughan dismissed a detailed denial when Rashid said he also heard the English skipper referred to a group of Asian players as “their lot” during a 2009 county match

Michael Vaughan has categorically denied making a racist statement against a group of Asian cricketers who said TV footage supported his case.

The BBC is under pressure to clarify the former English captain’s future as an expert after Adil Rashid confirmed a racism allegation.

Rashid, a Yorkshire player and senior English one-day team member, said he heard Vaughan say to four Asian players who took the field for Yorkshire during a 2009 county game, “There are too many of you we have to object do that.”

The claim was originally made by another Yorkshire teammate, Azeem Rafiq, who made a number of allegations of institutional racism against the county.

The English leg spinner Rashid told The Cricketer. “I wanted to focus on my cricket as much as possible and avoid distractions to the detriment of the team, but I can confirm Azeem Rafiq’s memory of Michael Vaughan’s comments on a group of us Asian players.”

Former Pakistani bowler Rana Naved ul-Hasan also said he heard Vaughan.

Vaughan has resigned from Radio 5 Live Tuffers and the Vaughan Cricket Show while the BBC awaits Yorkshire’s full report on the Rafiq claims.

Rashid’s decision to speak out increased pressure on the BBC to make another statement about Vaughan’s future – he is slated to be part of the BBC Test Match special team that covers the Ashes starting next month.

On Monday, 47-year-old Vaughan made a detailed statement pleading his innocence. “I categorically deny saying the words attributed to me by Azeem Rafiq and would like to repeat this publicly because the comment ‘your lot’ just never happened.”

“Anyone who has seen the Sky footage of Yorkshire’s pre-match huddle at the game in question in June 2009 and the interaction between the players will find it difficult to reconcile those scenes with the presented version of events.”

The first time in Yorkshire history that four players of Asian origin joined the same team was “an important milestone for the county and a moment of pride for me personally,” said the former England captain. the Ashes won.

Sky footage showed the former Yorkshire captain shaking hands with each of the Asian players “because I realized this was an important moment.” It is “inconceivable that I would have made the derogatory remark attributed to me. It contradicts everything I have always believed. “

Rashid, a key member of England’s T20 team who reached the World Cup semi-finals last week, told The Cricketer. “I wanted to focus on my cricket as much as possible and avoid distractions to the detriment of the team, but I can confirm Azeem Rafiq’s memory of Michael Vaughan’s comments on a group of us Asian players.”

Bradford-born Rashid, who made his Yorkshire debut 15 years ago, added: “Racism is a cancer in all areas of life and unfortunately also in professional sport and must of course be eradicated.”

The BBC withdrew from last week’s Vaughan’s 5 live show after canceling it. This Monday’s program had already been replaced by coverage of the English World Cup qualifier against San Marino.

The decision to speak out by Rashid, who helped England advance to the semi-finals at this month’s T20 World Cup, will put pressure on the BBC to clarify whether Vaughan’s role as on-air expert and presenter can continue.

The BBC had to add to their testimony that they “remain in conversation with Michael and his team” and had no access to the Yorkshire report.

Fox Sports, which will provide audio to BT Sport during the Winter Ashes series, is currently keeping Vaughan as the commentator for this winter’s Ashes.

Fashion brand Charles Tyrwhitt, which Vaughan employs as a brand ambassador, said it is aware of the allegations against him and will be “closely monitoring” the situation.

The Telegraph Media Group, which Vaughan employs as a regular columnist, said it takes allegations of racism “very seriously” and has requested a copy of the Yorkshire report.

Rafiq and former Yorkshire chairman Roger Hutton, who stepped down over the scandal, will testify at a hearing of the special committee on digital, culture, media and sport on Tuesday.

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