Imran Khan reveals experiencing racism in English cricket

This comes in light of the recent allegations of racism made by former Yorkshire captain Azeem Rafiq

Imran Khan reveals experiencing racism in English cricket Photo: Twitter

Former captain of Pakistan's 1992 World Cup-winning team, Imran Khan, has recently spoke about his experience of witnessing racism in English cricket. 

He shared his observations while discussing his time as captain for Sussex and Worcestershire during the 1970s and 80s. This comes in light of the recent allegations of racism made by former Yorkshire captain Azeem Rafiq.

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“Look, I haven’t had much time to watch cricket as my life hasn’t given me spare time in the last four years but I read about the Yorkshire racism scandal,” Imran Khan told Times Radio.

“From the time I started, which was 1971 as a teenager, to the point I was finishing cricket in the mid-80s, I saw a change take place in England. There was a lot of open racism in English cricket and county cricket when I started but by the end of my career somehow if there was racism it went undercover.

“You did not have the word racism by the time I finished in the sort of mid to late 80s but when I started off there was all the time racist remarks on the field. Even the Pakistanis, especially in the north of England, would suffer racism. There were these skinheads who would you know call you a P*** and abuse you on the streets.

“It gradually began to change and by the time I finished there was much less racism," said Imran Khan.

Rafiq went public with details of the racist abuse he claimed to have suffered during his time at Headingley. In response to his previous allegations, an inquiry was set up to investigate institutional racism at one of English cricket's leading county clubs. 

The statement included complaints of non-white players being called "Pakis" and "elephant washers", as well as being told to "go back to where you came from."

During a hearing in London, the CDC panel upheld charges against five former players and coaches, including England Test stars Tim Bresnan and Matthew Hoggard, in relation to the use of racist and/or discriminatory language. 

None of the five attended the hearing, with Hoggard saying the ECB's disciplinary procedures had "failed everybody".

Former Yorkshire and England player Gary Ballance, who now plays for Zimbabwe, admitted to using racist and/or discriminatory language prior to the hearing.

Yorkshire admitted to four amended charges against them, and the panel will disclose any sanctions against the club and individuals at a later date.