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Racism In English Cricket

David Lloyd apologises to Azeem Rafiq after being named in DCMS testimony

by Wisden Staff 3 minute read

Sky commentator David ‘Bumble’ Lloyd has issued an apology to Azeem Rafiq and the Asian cricketing community after he was named during Rafiq’s testimony to MPs on the DCMS committee meeting regarding the Yorkshire racism scandal.

Rafiq’s emotional, wide-ranging comments were critical of Lloyd, who he alleged talked about his “personal drinking” in private messages with others.

“This guy who doesn’t even know me, never spent any time with me, was talking about my personal drinking, going out,” Rafiq told MPs. “That was David Lloyd, England coach, commentator. I found it disturbing because Sky are supposedly doing this amazing work on bringing racism to the front, and within a week of me speaking out that got sent to me and I thought ‘there’s some closet racists. I need to do something about it’.”

“In October 2020, I had a private message exchange with a third party involved in cricket, about a number of topics,” Lloyd wrote in a statement posted on Twitter. “In these messages, I referred to allegations about Azeem Rafiq which I had heard from within the game. I also made some comments about the Asian cricket community.

“I deeply regret my actions, and I apologise most sincerely to Azeem and to the Asian cricket community for doing this, and for any offence caused. I am strongly committed to making cricket a more inclusive sport. It is very obvious now that more work needs to be done and I will do everything I can to remove discrimination from the sport I love, and the sport that has been my life for 50 years.”

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