Michael Vaughan will be commentating on Ashes, despite BBC being suspended after Azeem Rafiq reported… Fox Sports – who will audio-stream to BT Sport – backs former England captain

  • BT Sport announced that it will air live television coverage during the Ashes 
  • Michael Vaughan was removed from BBC Radio 5 Live’s programme 
  • Vaughan was mentioned in the Yorkshire report on Azeem Rafiq’s treatment 
  • However, he will still be heard by the UK audience regardless of what happens to him in BBC investigations

Despite his suspension by BBC over alleged racist comments towards Azeem Raffiq’s face, Michael Vaughan has been invited to commentate at the Ashes. This is because he has the support and backing of Fox Sports (Australian rights-holders) who will transmit the audio to BT Sport.

BT Sport announced Monday that they will be broadcasting live TV coverage of Ashes in a four-year agreement with Cricket Australia. SportmailVaughan will be heard in August by UK audiences regardless of what happens to the BBC investigation into Rafiq’s behaviour.

Vaughan, who admitted to being named in an independent report on Yorkshire’s treatment Rafiq was among those who were removed from BBC Radio 5 Live’s weekly program. Vaughan categorically rejects any form of racism.

Michael Vaughan is set to commentate on the Ashes despite being suspended by the BBC

Michael Vaughan will commentate on Ashes, despite having been suspended by BBC

Vaughan was stood down from his weekly programme on BBC Radio 5 Live last week

Vaughan had to be removed from BBC Radio 5 Live’s weekly show last week

Rafiq claimed that during an England County Championship match 2009, the ex-captain said to Rafiq and three other Asians, “There’s too many of you all.” It is time to change it.

Vaughan’s future as BBC executive is most likely to depend on the content of his testimony to the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport select hearing, November 16, where Rafiq and Yorkshire executives are called to make evidence.

Rana Naved-ul-Hasan was an ex-fast bowler for Pakistan and said that Rafiq supported his version of events. But, Ajmal Shahzad, an ex-spinner from England, previously stated that he had not heard the exchange.

It came after admitting he was named in the independent report into Yorkshire's treatment of Azeem Rafiq

It came after admitting he was named in the independent report into Yorkshire’s treatment of Azeem Rafiq

Vaughan is being supported by BBC executives, who are understandably nervous, considering the sensitive nature of his allegations. However, he was reassured that Fox supports him.

Fox signed the 47-year-old to a long-term deal. Fox paid him even though he was unable to travel to Australia last winter due to border restrictions.

As Sportmail reported last month, BT are not sending a commentary team to Australia and their coverage will come from a studio in London anchored by experienced broadcaster Matt Smith, with former England captains Sir Alastair Cook and Sir Andrew Strauss on punditry. 

BT’s Fox comment team will feature Australia Test legends Shane Warne and Adam Gilchrist.

BT are not sending a commentary team to Australia and their Ashes coverage will come from London

BT is not sending a commentary crew to Australia. Their Ashes coverage will be done from London.