Azeem Rafiq apologizes after emergence of historic anti-Semitic text messages – .

Azeem Rafiq apologizes after emergence of historic anti-Semitic text messages – .

Azeem Rafiq has apologized after an SMS conversation emerged in which he used anti-Semitic slurs when discussing another cricketer in 2011.
Rafiq’s testimony before a small parliamentary committee on Tuesday, describing the abuse and discrimination he faced during two stays in Yorkshire, revealed a culture of institutional racism in county cricket and led several other players to present their own accounts.

However, he was forced to confront his own past comments on Thursday after historic messages were revealed in a report by The temperature. In a conversation with former Leicestershire cricketer Ateeq Javid, Rafiq accuses a third player of being reluctant to spend money at a team dinner because “he’s Jewish”.

In a statement, Rafiq said he was furious with himself, “ashamed” and that he was “a different person today”.

“I was sent a picture of this exchange from early 2011 today. I went back to check my account and it’s me. I have absolutely no excuse, ”Rafiq wrote.

“I’m ashamed of this exchange and have now deleted it so as not to offend further. I was 19 at the time and I hope and believe that I am a different person today. I am incredibly angry with myself and apologize to the Jewish community and to anyone who is rightly offended by this. “

Former Yorkshire President Roger Hutton said on Tuesday he believed the county club to be institutionally racist and revealed he had been asked to drop an investigation into Rafiq’s allegations.

Rafiq bit back tears during his testimony as he described feeling “isolated and humiliated” during his time at the club, alleging that racist terms were “used constantly”, especially under the guidance of Andrew Gale and captain Gary Ballance, and involved several other top players.

Rafiq has also accused Yorkshire cricket manager Martyn Moxon of systematic intimidation, including an explosion on Rafiq’s first day back after his son was stillbirth. Moxon, who is currently off work for a stress-related illness, has faced repeated calls to resign.

Rafiq said on Wednesday he hoped the “floodgates” were now open and “hundreds and thousands” could share their experiences of racism in county cricket.

Rafiq said that “racism was no joke” and admitted that it “was not perfect” during his career as a professional cricketer.


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