New Delhi: In the light of huge backlash, Pakistan captain Sarfraz Ahmed has apologised after hurling racial abuse at South African all-rounder Andile Phehlukwayo during the second ODI between the two sides in Durban.
In a series of tweet, Sarfaraz wrote, “I wish to extend my sincere apologies to any person who may have taken offence from my expression of frustration which was unfortunately caught by the stump mic during yesterday’s game against SA. My words were not directed towards anyone in particular and I certainly had no intention of upsetting anyone. I did not even mean for my words to be heard, understood or communicated to the opposing team or the cricket fans. I have in the past and will continue in future to appreciate the camaraderie of my fellow cricketers from across the globe and will always respect and honour them on and off the field.”
Sarfraz Ahmed was caught making a racist sledge against South Africa’s Andile Phehlukwayo on Tuesday. His comments were caught on the stump mic and even discussed by the commentators. After facing serious backlash on social media, Sarfraz is in danger of getting official sanction if match officials instigate any disciplinary action and his comments are found punishable under the ICC code of conduct for player behaviour or the ICC’s anti-racism code.
What did Sarfraz Ahmed say to Andile Phehlukwayo
- The incident happened halfway through the 37th over of South Africa’s tense chase in the second ODI in Durban. Andile Phehlukwayo inside-edged a Shaheen Afridi delivery to deep fine leg for a single. As he ran off to the non-striker’s end, Sarfraz was caught clearly on the stump mics saying, in Urdu: “Abey
kaale, teri ammi aaj kahaan baitheen huyi hain? Kya parhwa ke aayehai aaj tu?”.
- It roughly translates to “Hey black guy, where’s your mother sitting today? What (prayer) have you got her to say for you today?”
- Meanwhile, according to South African media, ICC match referee Ranjan Madugalle has started the procedure of investigation in the alleged comments. While the South African team didn’t lay any charges, the match referee is looking into the matter after being made aware of the incident.
The ICC’s ‘Anti-Racism Code for Participants’ describes the offence as “engaging in any conduct (whether through the use of language, gestures or otherwise), which is likely to offend, insult, humiliate, intimidate, threaten, disparage or vilify any reasonable person in the position of a Player, Player Support Personnel, Umpire, Match Referee, Umpire Support Personnel or any other person (including a spectator) on the basis of their race, religion, culture, colour, descent, national or ethnic origin”.
South Africa beat Pakistan in the second one-day international on Tuesday in Durban to level their five-match series as unbeaten half-centuries from Rassie van der Dussen and Andile Phehlukwayo guided the hosts to a five-wicket victory.