Ex England cricket captain Michael Vaughan ‘cleared’ of using racist language in Azeem Rafiq row
Michael Vaughan has said that an England and Wales Cricket Board charge of using racist and/or discriminatory language against him has been dismissed.
The former England captain was alleged to have used the term “you lot” towards a group of four Yorkshire players of Asian ethnicity prior to a T20 match in June 2009, including Azeem Rafiq who first spoke out in 2020 about the discrimination he suffered across two stints with the county.
It’s believed Azeem Rafiq has not seen the judgement at the time Vaughan posted his statement.
Azeem Rafiq said: “Charges against seven of the eight defendants, including the widespread use of the ‘P’ word, have been upheld by the CDC today. This comes in addition to the other reports, panels and inquiries that found I and others suffered racial harassment and bullying while at Yorkshire.
“The issue has never been about individuals but the game as a whole. Cricket needs to understand the extent of its problems and address them. Hopefully, the structures of the game can now be rebuilt and institutionalised racism ended for good. It’s time to reflect, learn and implement change.”
However, Vaughan wrote on his Instagram account on Friday morning: “The dismissal of the specific charge that concerned me takes nothing away from Azeem’s own lived experiences.”
Vaughan had always denied using the phrase towards Rafiq, Adil Rashid, Rana Naved-ul-Hasan and Ajmal Shahzad as the Yorkshire team broke from their huddle at Trent Bridge.
He appeared in person at a Cricket Discipline Commission hearing which was held in public in London earlier this month to defend himself.
Vaughan’s Instagram statement began: “It has been both difficult and upsetting to hear about the painful experiences which Azeem has described over the past three years.
“The outcome of these CDC proceedings must not be allowed to detract from the core message that there can be no place for racism in the game of cricket, or in society generally.”
Vaughan’s statement, which was also later issued via his solicitors, continued: “The hearing made public that Azeem and I met 18 months ago, well before the CDC proceedings came into existence.
“I told him then that I am sorry for his unacceptable, negative experiences at the club I love and in the sport I love. We had what I thought was a really positive and constructive discussion.
“We shook hands with a shared intention to work together in order to create positive change in cricket. For my part, nothing has altered in that respect.
“There is still a job to do and I remain keen to help bring about positive change in any way that I can.”
Press Association – Jamie Gardner