Saturday, May 25, 2024

Mohammed Siraj reports racial abuse from crowd during SCG test

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Cricket Australia launched a parallel investigation with NSW Police into a mob incident at Sydney Cricket Ground on Sunday.

The game came to a halt for more than 10 minutes on a cup of tea when clearly restless Indian fast Mohammed Siraj spoke to captain Ajinkya Rahane and referees Paul Wilson and Paul Reiffel about the crowd’s behavior.

All six fans kicked out of SCG for alleged racial abuse on day four of third test made no racist comments, two spectators said within earshot The Sydney Morning Herald.

But Sean Carroll, head of integrity and security at Cricket Australia, said the Indian team’s allegations would be fully investigated.

“Abuse of cricketers by members of the crowd is not acceptable,” Carroll said.

“We thank the Indian team for their vigilance in reporting today’s incident, which we are currently investigating.

“A number of spectators were questioned by NSW police and subsequently expelled from SCG on Sunday afternoon.

“Pending the outcome of the investigation by NSW Police, CA has launched its own investigation into the matter.

“It is very unfortunate that an otherwise excellent test match played in great spirit by two friendly rivals has been tarnished by the actions of a small number of spectators over the past two days.

“As hosts, we apologize once again to the Indian team.”

This is the second potential incident of abuse in the third test under investigation by the International Cricket Council, after it was reported that Siraj and fellow Indian Jasprit Bumrah had been abused racial on days two and three.

SCG spectators marched by police

But Indian spectator Rishi Aryan said The Sydney Morning Herald on day four, the allegations were incorrect.

“All these boys were doing was a little player sledging on the outfield,” Mr. Aryan said.

“First it was (Jasprit) Bumrah then they had a sledge against Siraj. They kept calling him Shiraz and all that bullshit.

“That was literally it. Then he left. I don’t know why (the police kicked the men out). The next thing you know you see cops everywhere.

“It didn’t make sense. It was confusing.”

Another anonymous bystander also believed nothing racist had been said, supporting Mr Aryan’s claims that the phrase “Welcome to Sydney, Siraj” was used.

Australian top cricketer Michael Hussey has called for serious action to be taken if racial abuse has taken place.

“Get security there and if there has been any abuse against the players, kick them out immediately,” Hussey said on Fox Cricket.

Former England international Isa Guha backed Hussey.

“One thing is certain is that there is no place for racism anywhere,” Guha said.

“We have the right protocols in place.

“It was the right call for Siraj to come talk to the captain and the referee.”

Cricket Australia today issued a statement regarding yesterday’s reports of racial abuse.

“Cricket Australia condemns in the strongest terms any discriminatory behavior,” said Integrity and Security Officer Sean Carroll.

“If you engage in racist abuse, you are not welcome in Australian cricket.

“CA is awaiting the outcome of the International Cricket Council’s investigation into the matter reported to SCG on Saturday. Once those responsible are identified, CA will take the strongest possible action under our Anti-Harassment Code, including extended bans, new penalties and a referral to NSW Police.

“As hosts of the series, we wholeheartedly apologize to our friends on the Indian cricket team and assure them that we will pursue the matter to its fullest extent.

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