David Llyod apologises for offensive comments made against Azeem Rafiq and the Asian Community

Former Yorkshire cricket Azeem Rafiq has been in the news majorly for his recent testimony at the British Parliamentary committee after being victimized by racial abuse and bullying at his county cricket club. Rafiq, who last year alleged the Yorkshire CCC over the existence of ‘institutional racism' in the club, named as many as nine high-profile cricketers as part of the abuse he faced during his time at the club.

The names revealed by Azeem also include former England captain, Michael Vaughan, who has denied any such claims made by the Pakistan-born player. However, it was the former England player, coach, and umpire – David Lloyd, whose name grabbed the most attention, after the latter even issued an apology over his offensive comments.

Llyod issues apology to Azeem Rafiq over Social Media

David Lloyd publicly issued an apology to Azeem Rafiq after he accepted being guilty of using inappropriate comments. In October 2020, the 74-year old had made some derogatory comments involving the Asian community referring to Azeem's allegations over a message exchange. As per Azeem's statement, the Sky Sports commentator had messaged a few members from the media saying that, “a clubhouse is the lifeblood of a club and Asian players don’t go in there.”

Azeem described Lyod's comments were disturbing after his team at Sky Sports were doing ‘amazing work' in highlighting the injustice in front of the general public. He described him as a ‘closet racist'.

“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, ” said Bumble, accepting his offense. He also regretted his action and believes that more work needs to be done in making it an inclusive sport free of any discrimination.

“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 over 50 years.”

Sky Sports to further investigate the issue involving Llyod

David Lloyd has been an integral part of the Sky Sports commentary team for more than a few years. After he accepted his offense, Sky issued a statement in order to carry out an investigation into the matter.

“Sky is committed to actively championing inclusion in cricket – and in all sports – and opposing all forms of discrimination. We will be investigating the comments attributed to David Lloyd in today's select committee hearing.” The commentary team as Sky was quite vocal about the need to bring up the injustice that continues to exist in English cricket. Post the pandemic in 2020, Michael Holding, while working at Sky Sports, took a stance in highlighting the importance of the ‘Black Lives Matter' campaign, in order to eradicate any sort of racism from society.

Kartik Bansal

An avid Cricket Follower