Ross Taylor alleges racism in New Zealand cricket: Details here
Former batter Ross Taylor, in his autobiography named Black and White, has alleged that he and his other team-mates suffered racism in New Zealand cricket. Taylor, who has Samoan heritage on his mother's side, wrote that the game in New Zealand was "a pretty white sport". The 38-year-old retired from international cricket in April this year. Here are further details.
'Polynesian community is dramatically under-represented in the game'
In his autobiography, Taylor stated that racism was considered "banter". "For much of my career I've been an anomaly, a brown face in a vanilla line-up. That has its challenges, many of which aren't readily apparent to your team-mates. Given that the Polynesian community is dramatically under-represented in the game, it's probably no surprise that people sometimes assume I'm Maori or Indian," he wrote.
Other players too faced racism, as per Taylor
According to Taylor, "dressing-room banter is the barometer". "A team-mate 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," he further added in his autobiography.
Here is how NZC responded
New Zealand Cricket (NZC) acknowledged the experiences of Taylor. "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," the cricket board told the New Zealand Herald.
In July, Cricket Scotland was found institutionally racist
Racism in cricket goes beyond New Zealand cricket. Last month, the cricket board of Scotland resigned with immediate effect after an independent investigation found the board institutionally racist. As per ESPNcricinfo, as many as 448 examples of institutional racism were highlighted in the report named 'Changing the Boundaries', produced by consultancy firm Plan4Sport. Cricket Scotland was then been placed into special measures.
Other accounts of racism in cricket
Last year, England's Ollie Robinson was suspended from international cricket after his tweets from 2012 and 2013, deemed racist in nature, resurfaced. In 2020, South Africa's Ashwell Prince claimed that many players received racist slurs during the 2005 Australian tour. Several other cricketers, including Chris Gayle and Dwayne Bravo, have broken silence on racism in the past.
Taylor was recognized in Queen's Birthday Honors
Earlier this year, Taylor earned a spot in the Queen's Birthday Honors for his services to the game and Pacific communities. Taylor is now a Companion of the NZ Order of Merit in the Queen's Birthday Honors. He had been the nucleus of NZ's batting order. He remains the only player to have played over 100 matches in each of the three formats.
Taylor holds this record!
Taylor appeared in his 100th Test in February 2020 against India at Basin Reserve, Wellington. He became the only player in history to play 100 matches across all three formats (ODIs: 236, T20Is: 102). Former Indian captain Virat Kohli is the closest to matching Taylor's feat. In his resounding career, Taylor smashed 7,684 Test, 8,602 ODI, and 1,909 T20I runs.