ECB to investigate ‘Kevin’ slur, after Azeem Rahiq said that England and Yorkshire cricketers had used it to harass people of Asian and black backgrounds… Alex Hales allegedly gave his black dog this name due to it

  • The ECB pledges to investigate allegations that the word Kevin’ was used for slur
  • Azeem Rafiq claims that the term ‘Kevin” has been misused as an expression of racism 
  • Alex Hales allegedly named the dog Kevin after his name.
  • Hales has denied making the claim. However, Tom Harrison (ECB chief) said that he will investigate. 

The ECB have pledged to investigate damaging claims from Azeem Rafiq that England players have used the word ‘Kevin’ as a term of abuse for people from black and Asian backgrounds.

Ex-Yorkshire’s spinner, however, claimed that Gary Ballance was the one who introduced the term to England. The phrase allegedly became popular enough that Alex Hales gave his dog Kevin the name.

ECB chief executive Tom Harrison claimed he had not been aware of the racial insult until reading Rafiq’s witness statement, but pledged to investigate further. Hales claims that he named the dog Kevin Bridges in his defense of the claim and denies making the allegation.

‘The first time I became aware of the slur was reading the report,’ Harrison said. ‘It will now form part of the ECB investigation.’ 

Ballance is banned from playing for England after he admitted calling Rafiq a “P**i,” and Hales has been frozen out since failing a drugs test on the eve of the 2019 World Cup. The pair had become friends on England duty against Pakistan in 2016.

‘Kevin was something Gary (Ballance) used for people of colour in a derogatory manner. All the time,’ Rafiq said.

‘Gary and Alex got close to each other playing for England, but I understand Alex went on to name his dog Kevin because it was black. It is disgusting how much of a joke it became.’

ECB chief executive Tom Harrison has vowed to launch a probe into the use of the word 'Kevin' following an explosive claim made by Azeem Rafiq

Following an explosive claim by Azeem Rasiq, the chief executive officer of the ECB Tom Harrison said he would launch a probe to determine the usage of the term ‘Kevin. 

'Kevin' was allegedly introduced by Gary Ballance in reference to black and Asian people

Gary Ballance supposedly introduced the name “Kevin” to refer to Asian and black people 

The term took hold to such an extent that former England star Alex Hales named his black dog Kevin (pictured). The batsman denies the allegation

This term was so popular that Alex Hales, a former England cricket star, named his black dog Kevin (pictured). The allegation was denied by the batsman 

Rafiq also charged Yorkshire with covering up an unsuccessful drug test conducted by Ballance. 

In his 57-page witness statement, published by the DCMS post-hearing on Tuesday, Rafiq alleged that the club said the batsman had taken time off for ‘anxiety and mental health issues’ when he had tested positive for recreational drugs — and that they ‘protected Ballance with respect to his drug and alcohol issues’.

However, a spokesperson for Ballance said later: ‘Gary must correct the record relating to the egregious false allegations made in Azeem’s witness statement that Gary had “drug and alcohol issues” and “miss(ed) drug hair sample tests to avoid sanctions”. These accusations are untrues and must not have been made. Gary has never, to his knowledge, missed a drugs test and would not do so.’

Yorkshire refused to make any comment Tuesday night.

Rafiq, who was from three counties in Pakistan, appealed to victims for their help Tuesday. Rafiq stated that some victims were afraid to make their voices heard at hearings in Middlesex County, Notts County and Leicestershire.