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BCCI, CA take a stand, deplore racism

BCCI president Sharad Pawar and Cricket Australia chairman Creagh O’Connor say there is no place for racism in cricket, either on or off the field.

cricket Updated: Oct 18, 2007 02:57 IST
Hindustan Times

The president of the Board of Control for Cricket in India, Mr Sharad Pawar, and chairman of Cricket Australia, Mr Creagh O’Connor, on Wednesday issued a joint statement deploring racism of any kind anywhere in cricket.

Mr Pawar and Mr O’Connor said there is no place for racism in cricket, either on or off the field, and reiterated their support for ICC player and anti-racism codes, which support this objective.

They also noted that racism is a global problem, and is not confined to specific nations.

“Cricket crowds in all cricket nations are often noisy and boisterous, which is part of the fun of cricket,” they said in their joint statement.

“But all cricket nations have to be on guard to ensure that the fun does not cross the boundary into unacceptable behaviour.

“If it does, it is our expectation that the specifics of the ICC Anti-Racism Code be enforced without fear or favour.

“Players of all countries have a right to expect they will be treated with respect wherever they play in the world.

“Spectators, team officials or players who are concerned about inappropriate behaviour of other people at venues should draw that behaviour to the attention of venue authorities immediately so that it can be assessed on the spot and, if appropriate, addressed immediately rather than being reviewed via media reports published well after the crowd has gone home.”

Mr Pawar and Mr O’Connor said that everybody in cricket has to do whatever they can to address racism.

One of cricket’s strengths is that it is played, watched and loved by people of many races, nationalities, cultures and languages and when it is played and staged in the right spirit, it has the ability to bring people of diverse backgrounds together.

Mr Pawar and Mr O’Connor said they were concerned the ICC Anti-Racism Code could only work if it was genuinely embraced for the intent it sought to achieve, and said they had instructed their respective managements to ensure that the objectives of the code were understood and implemented appropriately at all venues.

The Australian adds: Match referee Chris Broad has filed a report to the ICC claiming there were racial comments from the crowd during the fifth ODI at Vadodara.

An ICC spokesman confirmed on Tuesday night that Broad had alerted the game’s governing body of his concerns. The spokesman claimed that each referee has a standard anti-racism pro-forma to fill in at the end of every Test and ODI.

It is unclear whether Broad filed another racial report from Sunday’s match at Nagpur, with the paper revealing that Symonds was the victim of more monkey chants.

“It just so happens that he filled it in slightly differently from the norm,” the ICC spokesman said. “The responsibility of members is quite clear,” the ICC spokesman said.

“If they’re not implementing or they don’t feel it’s appropriate to implement it (the ICC’s anti-racism code) we need to know why,” the spokesman added.

First Published: Oct 18, 2007 02:31 IST