Michael Vaughan faces complete exclusion from UK radio and television screens during this winter’s Ashes series due to his involvement in the ongoing investigation into racism in Yorkshire, following the BBC’s confirmation that they had dropped the former English captain, and BT Sport said they were investigating whether they could remove him from their commentator team.
Vaughan was accused by Azeem Rafiq of making a racist comment before a Yorkshire match in 2009, and although he has vehemently refused to do so, two other players, Adil Rashid and Rana Naved-ul-Hasan, have confirmed Rafiqs version of events.
“Although he is involved in a significant history in cricket, for editorial reasons we do not think it would be appropriate for Michael Vaughan to have a role in our Ashes team or a wider coverage of the sport at the moment,” the BBC said in . a declaration. “We require our contributors to talk about relevant topics and his involvement in Yorkshire history represents a conflict of interest.”
Earlier this month, BBC Tuffers and Vaughan dropped the radio program Vaughan presents alongside Phil Tufnell after the 47-year-old used his Daily Telegraph column to admit he had been accused by Rafiq. But BT Sports’ task of removing him from their Ashes broadcasts is complicated by the fact that he has a contract with Australia’s Fox network, whose comments they had planned to use. They could now put together their own commentary team or try to switch from Fox to the other Australian TV station covering the series, Channel 7.
“As a result of Covid’s and travel restrictions, BT Sport had made the decision to take our comment feed from the Australian host broadcaster,” said a spokesman for BT Sport. “The recent report presented to the UK Parliament revealing institutional racism in cricket and specifically the Yorkshire County Cricket Club is extremely disappointing and a concern for all. In view of these recent events, we are reviewing and discussing our comment plans with Cricket Australia. “
Vaughan has been accused of telling a group of Asian cricketers that there were “too many of you, we need to do something about it”. “This hit me very hard,” he wrote in the Telegraph. ‘It was like being hit over the head with a brick. I have been involved in cricket for 30 years and have never been accused of any similar incident or disciplinary offense as a player or commentator. That the claim came completely out of the blue and more than a decade after it should have happened made it even harder to process. I completely and categorically deny that I have ever said those words. “