Friday December 02, 2022

New Zealand great Ross Taylor says he faced racism

August 12, 2022

WELLINGTON: New Zealand Cricket said on Thursday that they are looking into allegations by former skipper Ross Taylor that he suffered racism.

The 38-year-old, who is of New Zealand-Samoan descent, retired from international cricket in April after a glorious career spanning 16 years.

Taylor’s comments are the latest accusation of racism in cricket.

In his autobiography “Black and White” released on Thursday, the legendary batsman says he endured racially barbed comments from teammates, but does not specify at what level of the game in New Zealand.

Taylor said that for most of his career he was “an anomaly, a brown face in a vanilla line-up”.

“In many ways, dressing-room banter is the barometer,” he wrote.

“Cricket in New Zealand is a pretty white sport. For much of my career I've been an anomaly, a brown face in a vanilla line-up,” Taylor wrote in an extract published by the New Zealand Herald

Taylor also wrote about experiences from within the New Zealand team environment that had been racially “insensitive”.

NZC spokesperson told the New Zealand Herald: “NZC deplores racism, is a staunch supporter of the NZ Human Rights Commission's 'Give Nothing to Racism' campaign, and is deeply disappointed Ross has been exposed to this type of behaviour. We'll definitely reach out to Ross to discuss the matter.”

“A teammate used to tell me, ’You’re half a good guy, Ross, but which half is good? You don’t know what I’m referring to.’ I was pretty sure I did.

“Other players also had to put up with comments that dwelt on their ethnicity.”

Ross Taylor represented New Zealand in 112 Tests, scoring 7,683 runs between 2006 and 2022.

Ross Taylor was captain of the Black Caps for two years until 2012.

A spokesman for New Zealand Cricket told AFP they have contacted Taylor about the allegations.

“NZC has reached out to Ross to discuss some of the comments in his book, both to better understand the details of them and to offer support. These discussions are ongoing,” said the spokesman.

“Ross currently sits on an NZC working group seeking to improve the game’s engagement with Pasifika communities and his input is greatly valued.

“We consider him an important part of our cricket family and are deeply disappointed he’s been exposed to this type of behaviour.

Last month, an independent review into allegations of racism at Cricket Scotland found the governance and leadership practices of the organisation to be “institutionally racist”.

In June, Pakistan-born Azeem Rafiq said his family have been subjected to “threats, attacks and intimidation” since the former Yorkshire spinner made allegations of racism against his old club.

Rafiq sent shockwaves through cricket when he said he had been subjected to racial harassment and bullying during his time as a Yorkshire player.