That YCCC chose to give Rafiq virtually no warning of yesterday’s statement, or offer to meet the 30-year-old and his legal team to discuss the findings of an independent panel, does not square with club chairman Roger Hutton’s assertion that there’s “a clear and collective determination to enthusiastically embrace” the report’s many recommendations.
What it does do, however, is perpetuate the view that elements of YCCC are still in denial about the scandal’s seriousness after seven of Rafiq’s contentious allegations were upheld, including use of racist language by a club coach.
With the England and Wales Cricket Broad now accepting that Rafiq is owed an apology as it looks at its own response, no wonder this whole process has attracted the attention of senior Parliamentarians now seeking further answers after the Headingley club failed to prove that it is not institutionally racist.
Their duty now, on behalf of Rafiq and the wider struggle to eradicate racism across society, to maintain this pressure – even if it means moving international matches to other venues – until they’re assured that the club has become a beacon of integration from the boardroom to the grassroots. And YCCC has much to do until this test is passed to the satisfaction of all, not least Azeem Rafiq.