Yorkshire CCC put on notice by Ministers over Azeem Rafiq – The Yorkshire Post says

“PARLIAMENT is watching. The Government is watching. And the country is watching.”

Culture Minister Chris Philp effectively served notice on Yorkshire CCC – and the England and Wales Cricket Board – about their future obligations to sport, and wider society, in a withering Commons statement in the wake of Azeem Rafiq racism scandal.

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Yorkshire can also count itself fortunate to receive the benefit of the doubt after it emerged that Mr Philip and Julian Knight, the chair of the relevant select committee, had still to receive, as MPs met, the club’s unredacted report into the treatment of Mr Rafiq – one of Lord Patel’s first undertakings since he was made chairman just last Friday.

Lord Patel is the new chairman of Yorkshire County Cricket Club.

Yet, while Lord Patel was credited for settling Yorkshire’s legal battle with Mr Rafiq at the first opportunity amid claims that the Headingley outfit is institutionally racist, and the sincerity of his opening remarks at Monday’s press conference, he should be in no doubt about the scale of the task that is still to confront him.

As Mr Philp said, this is just the first step as the Minister – and every MP – made clear their revulsion at the treatment of Mr Rafiq; strong belief that Yorkshire’s remaining board members need to resign and a shared disbelief that the ECB, as a supposed governing body, was too weak to intervene.

Noting the review now set up by the ECB, it was self-evident from the tone of these exchanges that the position of its chief executive Tom Harrison is just as untenable as the futures of Yorkshire’s CEO Mark Arthur, senior coach Martyn Moxon and potentially many others.

Headingley remains mired in scandal following the Azeem Rafiq racism scandal.

Their culpability – and the message that their inaction sends out to all players who have experienced racism and discrimination – is such that the Government is right to reserve judgement until new top teams are in place committed to helping cricket become a force for good in every community.

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Azeem Rafiq's racism case has rocked Yorkshire - and cricket - to its foundations.