REVEALED: One current Yorkshire cricketer reduced team-mate Azeem Rafiq to tears by calling him a P**i and asking him if his dad owned corner shops – but a club investigation ruled it was just friendly BANTER

  • Yorkshire’s investigation into allegations that Azeem Rafiq committed racist abuses against the past by Azeem Rafiq was concluded last week. 
  • Now, it emerges at a senior player at the club would regularly called Rafiq ‘P**i’
  • The player would tell others not to speak to Rafiq because ‘he’s a P**i’
  • The Yorkshire investigation panel ruled that the comments were made in’spiritual friendly banter’

An unnamed Yorkshire cricketer who is a senior player at the club admitted regularly calling Azeem Rafiq ‘P**i’ but was cleared of wrongdoing on the basis it was ‘good natured banter between friends’.

ESPN cricinfo reports that this is what happened after Yorkshire last week claimed that no disciplinary action was necessary after an investigation into Rafiq’s claims of historic racism.

The publication claims that Rafiq broke down at the remarks by the player. However, the players reportedly told the investigator that they didn’t realize they were causing offence and would have stopped if Rafiq had asked. 

Azeem Rafiq was reportedly frequently called 'P**i' by a senior player at Yorkshire

Azeem Rafiq was reportedly frequently called ‘P**i’ by a senior player at Yorkshire

The report into institutional racism at Yorkshire ruled that the remarks were 'friendly banter'

The Yorkshire report into institutional racism found that the comments were ‘friendly banter.

According to the player, he also told the investigating team that he had said to others: “Don’t talk with him!” [Rafiq], he’s a P**i”‘ and would ask “is that your uncle?” They also said “does dad own those?” when they saw Asian men with bearded faces. Referring to corner stores. 

A team of investigators was assigned to find evidence that could be passed on to a panel. The panel would then make recommendations and conclusions. 

The panel disagreed. They stated in their report: “The Panel does not accept that Azeem was offended.” [the other player’s]Commentaries, made at the time or later.

ESPN add that the panel’s conclusion labelled the remarks as ‘banter between friends’ and that Rafiq could have been ‘expected to take such comments in the spirit in which they were intended… [so]Azeem was not entitled to be offended. [the other player]In the same spirit as friendly banter, he could make derogatory or offensive comments back at him.

ESPN claims that one of the members of the panel was also a member non-executive of Yorkshire’s board. 

Yorkshire has refused to publish the investigation because of legal restrictions. However, the England and Wales Cricket Board stated last Thursday that they had received copies. 

Yorkshire have now sent the ECB a full copy of the report after twice missing deadlines to do so

After missing two deadlines, Yorkshire has now sent the ECB a complete copy of the report

After last week's report was published, Rafiq said: 'Sometimes you just want to scream'

Rafiq stated that sometimes you just want to shout after last week’s report was published.

Rafiq’s claims have been confirmed by the ECB.

Rafiq replied to Yorkshire’s announcement last week on Twitter: “Sometimes you just want !!!!’.”

Of the decision not to open disciplinary proceedings against any employees, players or executives, a spokesperson for the 30-year-old said: ‘This is despite Yorkshire County Cricket Club’s admission that Azeem was the victim of racial harassment and bullying. This is despite Yorkshire County Cricket Club’s admission that it failed to follow its own policy and investigate allegations of racism as recently as 2018.

‘It is inconceivable that there are no current employees who should not have been disciplined for their conduct. Yorkshire’s failures continue to mount up and it is time that board members — for once — do the decent thing and resign.’