Michael Carberry says he has “no respect” for Oliver Dowden’s comments after the Culture Secretary called the ECB’s decision to suspend Ollie Robinson “over the top”.
Racist and sexist tweets Robinson posted in 2012 and 2013, when he was in his late teens, were unearthed and shared on the day he made his Test debut against New Zealand last week. The ECB announced at the conclusion of the Lord’s Test that the fast bowler had been suspended from all international cricket pending the outcome of a disciplinary investigation.
England captain Joe Root said Robinson has to “learn some hard lessons”, but Culture Secretary Dowden called the suspension “over the top” and called on the ECB to “think again”.
“Ollie Robinson’s tweets were offensive and wrong,” Dowden said on Twitter. “They are also a decade old and written by a teenager. The teenager is now a man and has rightly apologised. The ECB has gone over the top by suspending him and should think again.”
Ollie Robinson’s tweets were offensive and wrong.
They are also a decade old and written by a teenager. The teenager is now a man and has rightly apologised. The ECB has gone over the top by suspending him and should think again.
In response, Carberry – who last year said Black cricketers feel like they risk their careers if they attempt to confront prejudice – says Dowden has not experienced racial discrimination, and therefore was speaking “from a place of no facts or no reason”.
“I think Oliver Dowden needs to come and spend a day with me and live a day in my shoes, and a day in the shoes of most BAME community people, and actually speak from a place of facts and reason,” Carberry told Sky Sports News.
“Marcus Rashford only two or three weeks ago was trying to do some good in the world, using his platforms and various means. He’s trying to do some good in the world for kids of all colours, all races, all backgrounds.
“He’s trying to do some good, [and he] gets racially abused – I don’t hear Oliver Dowden piping up.
“So as far as I am concerned I have no respect for what his comments are about.
“He has never been racially abused, he’s never been racially discriminated against, so as far as I see it, it’s coming from a place of no facts or no reason.”
Carberry says his reaction to the surfacing of Robinson’s Tweets was: “Here we go again”.
“It further backs up what I said last year, that the game has a massive problem,” he said.
“Until people start to deal with the problem, I am one of those – and I can speak for most of my community – we are not interested in proposals or what cricket is proposing to do.
“We need to start seeing action. Good on the ECB for suspending Ollie Robinson.
“I have got some other questions on that – why was this not picked up on years ago? Why has this guy been allowed to get this far in his career, and achieve what he’s achieved at the highest level?
“It’s a disappointment to me. Why are we not affecting our young professional cricketers better than what I am seeing right now?”
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