Former England captain Michael Vaughan has expressed his disappointment on being dropped from the BBC’s Ashes coverage for allegedly making racist comments to an Asian-origin player a few years back.
While expressing his disappointment, Vaughan said he ‘wants to be part of the solution’ and help make cricket “a more welcoming sport for all”. His comments came after BCC confirmed on Wednesday that Ashes-winning England captain Vaughan will not be part of its Test Match Special team for the upcoming series in Australia.
BBC’s decision came after Vaughan was named in Yorkshire’s report into Azeem Rafiq’s claims of racism during his time at the club. Rafiq has claimed that Vaughan had told a group of Asian-origin players that there were too many of them in the club now and they need to do something about ‘you lot’.
Vaughan has repeatedly denied the allegation made against him.
On Wednesday evening, he reacted to BBC’s decision via social a media post.
“Very disappointed not to be commentating for TMS (BBC Test Match Special) on the Ashes and will miss working with great colleagues and friends, but looking forward to being behind the mic for Fox Cricket in Australia,” Vaughan said on social media.
“The issues facing cricket are bigger than any individual case and I want to be part of the solution, listening, educating myself, and helping to make it a more welcoming sport for all,” he wrote on Twitter.
England leg-spinner Adil Rashid and former Pakistan bowler Rana Naved-ul-Hasan both said they heard the comment, while the fourth player in the group – Ajmal Shahzad – said he had no recollection of the alleged event.
Vaughan wrote in his Daily Telegraph column that he “completely and categorically denies” making the comment and insisted he is not racist.
He wrote: “I categorically deny saying the words attributed to me by Azeem Rafiq and want to re-state this publicly because the ‘you lot’ comment simply never happened.”
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