Azeem Rafiq: Yorkshire will not take disciplinary action over allegations of racism by former player

Azeem Rafiq
A former England youth captain, Azeem Rafiq captained Yorkshire in a Twenty20 fixture in 2012

Yorkshire will not take disciplinary action against any player, employee or executive after a report found Azeem Rafiq had been a victim of “racial harassment and bullying” at the club.

Seven of the 43 allegations were upheld by an independent panel last month.

A spokesperson for the player has called on Yorkshire board members to resign.

“It is inconceivable that there are no current employees who should have been disciplined for their conduct,” said the spokesperson.

“Yorkshire’s failures continue to mount up and it is time that board members – for once – do the decent thing and resign.”

Yorkshire said it carried out its own internal investigation after the findings in the report.

The club concluded that “there is no conduct or action taken by any of its employees, players or executives that warrants disciplinary action”.

In response to Yorkshire’s statement, Rafiq posted on social media:external-link “Wow just when you think this club couldn’t get more embarrassing you find a way.”

He added: “So you accept I was the victim of racial harassment and bullying but no one warrants disciplinary action? Sometimes you just want to scream!”

Last month Yorkshire chairman Roger Hutton apologised to Rafiq, saying there was “no question” that during his first spell at the club the spinner was “the victim of racial harassment”.

Rafiq added that he is yet to receive a copy of the full report.

He received a heavily redacted version of the findings earlier this month after Yorkshire missed the Friday, 8 October deadline ordered by an employment judge.

Yorkshire said their decision to not take any disciplinary action does not “diminish the importance of the findings or the fact that there is much the club can learn from the report”.

They said: “It was important for Azeem to raise the issues and without him doing so we would not have the panel’s recommendations which are an important part of the club’s continuing journey.”

The statement also said club chairman Roger Hutton “believes the club and everyone connected to it should be proud of the work that the club has done to improve diversity and inclusion prior to his involvement, but equally acknowledges there remains much to be done going forward”.

Yorkshire released a summary of the report initially, stating they could not publish it in its entirety for legal reasons, followed by a redacted version.

The club said they have provided a copy of the report to the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) and is “working with them on their investigation into the issues raised”.

They added: “Ultimately the issues raised by Azeem Rafiq are going to be considered not only by the Panel but also the Employment Tribunal and the ECB.”

The ECB confirmed they received a copy of the report on Thursday, “together with assurances from the club to cooperate fully with the ongoing regulatory process”.

They added: “This is a matter with many serious allegations at its heart and the ECB’s regulatory team will now consider the report as part of its investigation. “We anticipate that it will take time for the regulatory process to reach its conclusion, but it is imperative that this is completed thoroughly and with fairness to all involved.”

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