Azeem Rafiq releases statement after Yorkshire chair issues apology

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Azeem Rafiq has called on further action to be taken after Lord Patel’s apology (Picture: Richard Sellers/Getty Images)

Azeem Rafiq has publicly thanked the new chair of Yorkshire County Cricket club for his support after Lord Patel issued him an apology over the handling of his racism and bullying allegations.

However, Rafiq has called for further action to be taken by urging the likes of club chief executive Mark Arthur, director of cricket Martyn Moxon and others in the coaching staff to resign.

Arthur and Moxon are yet to go on record in response to the allegations.

His comments come after Lord Patel said the club settled the employment tribunal with Rafiq following a report that found former player Rafiq was a victim of ‘racial harassment and bullying’ at Yorkshire but the club said it would not discipline anyone.

A statement released by Rafiq said: ‘I want to thank my family, the public, the politicians, the media and the many players and coaches who have supported me both publicly and privately.

‘You have given me strength to get through the bad times, of which there have been too many since I first spoke about my experiences.

‘I also want to thank Lord Patel for making the offer and sorting this out within 72 hours of his appointment. It should not have taken the rest of the club a year to realise I would not be silenced through an NDA.

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Cricket - Yorkshire CCC Press Conference - Emerald Headingley Stadium, Leeds, Britain - November 8, 2021 Chairman Lord Kamlesh Patel during press conference Action Images via Reuters/Carl Recine

Yorkshire CCC chair Lord Patel issued an apology to Azeem Rafiq (Picture: Action Images via Reuters)

‘I spoke out because I wanted to create change at the club. I brought a legal claim because the club refused to acknowledge the problem and create change.

‘For the first time that I can remember, I have hope this might happen – but I will be watching and continue to campaign to ensure that it does.

‘As Lord Patel said, this is just the start if we are to make cricket open to everyone, no matter their background. Yorkshire County Cricket Clue and the sport at large desperately need reform.

‘I will continue to campaign against institutional racism and look forward to speaking at the select committee hearing next week. I urge others who have suffered to come forward. There is strength in numbers and I will be right behind you.

‘This is a good start, but I want to reiterate my call for the change that must come next – and one that must happen quickly. Mark Arthur, Martyn Moxon and many of those in the coaching staff have been part of the problem.

‘They have consistently failed to take responsibility for what happened on their watch and must go. I urge them to do the right thing and resign to make way for those who will do what is needed for the club’s future.

‘This has been an exhausting time for my family and me. I need a few says to take a breath and prepare for the select committee hearing next Tuesday.

‘I am free to speak openly and will continue to do so. I will also continue to campaign for equality and respect for all in cricket and to ensure the game I love is one where everyone is welcomed.’

Yorkshire CCC has also been suspended from hosting England matches following the racism allegations made by Rafiq.


MORE : Yorkshire cricket chairman Roger Hutton resigns amid Azeem Rafiq racism storm


MORE : Yorkshire chair Lord Patel apologises to Azeem Rafiq over handling of racism and bullying allegations

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