Sportscotland has announced an independent review into racism in Scottish cricket, with the sport’s governing body pledging full co-operation with the process.
The organisation say that the review will include “in-depth consultation and engagement with the cricket community” and will provide anonymity for anyone who wants to share their lived experience of racism within the sport.
The full scope of the independent review will be announced within the next week and sportscotland say they will be “responsible for holding Cricket Scotland and its associations to account, to ensure that real change is delivered”.
Chief executive of sportscotland, Stewart Harris, said: “There can be no place for racism or discrimination of any kind in sport and it is vital that all complaints of this nature are robustly investigated. That must always be the starting point when we are talking about racism and racial inequalities.
“It is clear that steps must be taken to address the problem of racism within cricket in Scotland. We must listen to the very real concerns that have and will continue to be raised as part of this wholly independent process. But more than that, we must also act on these and start to rebuild trust.
“This will not be easy and it will take time. However, as the national agency for sport we will do what is required to effect positive change wherever it is needed in Scottish cricket.”
The review comes after allegations from former Scotland players and other figures within the sport, with one high profile former player saying the problem was deep-rooted within Cricket Scotland.
Scotland’s record wicket-taker Majid Haq had called for an inquiry, while his former team-mate Qasim Sheikh spoke about abuse he had suffered during his career.
The allegations came after former Yorkshire player Azeem Rafiq spoke out about his treatment in English cricket, sparking change at the club.
Speaking to Sky Sports, Haq said: “A lot of people have asked me if I think Cricket Scotland are institutionally racist – I think they are. An investigation would show that they are.”
Sheikh added: “I’ve had so many messages from people suggesting they’ve faced racism. Let’s have an investigation and let’s find out the truth.”
Cricket Scotland have said that the review will allow the organisation to “move forward positively” and has promised to act on any recommendations that come from the process.
President of Cricket Scotland, Sue Strachan, said: “We have reached out to sportscotland for their help and support to investigate any evidence of racism in cricket in Scotland. We are grateful to sportscotland for commissioning this wide-ranging independent review of racism within the sport that we love.
“The Boards of Cricket Scotland, in association with the regional Associations and the Scottish Cricketers Association and the Cricket Scotland Match Officials Association, will engage fully with the independent review and have committed to acting upon any recommendations made as a result of its findings. We want to ensure that going forward there is no place for racism within cricket in Scotland.”
The full scope of the review will be confirmed publicly by sportscotland within the next seven days.
We hope that everyone from within our sport who has experience of racism will engage with the process knowing that their anonymity is guaranteed and that incidents of racism will be robustly investigated.