Former Australian cricketers Mike Hussey and Shane Warne have come down hard on crowd racism after allegations that Indian fast bowlers Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Siraj were racially abused by the crowd during the ongoing third Test at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG). Bumrah, Siraj and Indian team management were seen in lengthy discussion with the International Cricket Council (ICC) and SCG ground security after Saturday’s play and soon after reports emerged the pair believed they had been the victims of racist abuse from the crowd on the second and third day of the Pink Test.
“It’s terrible behaviour and I can’t believe it’s still happening in this day and age. They should be banned for life from coming to the cricket,” Hussey told Fox Cricket.
“The Indians have come here to our shores to entertain us, play some great cricket, we should be so grateful that we can watch some live sport. To treat the players like that is unacceptable,” he added.
Agreeing with Hussey, Warne said the allegations were particularly worrying given the events of the past one year, which have seen a global push for racial equality.
“Disgraceful to be honest, absolutely disgraceful,” Warne said. “Should never happen, especially what’s happened in the last 12 months or so with everything else around the world. Let’s hope they come down heavy and find the culprits,” he added.
Here are the reactions by some other players:
I personally have heard many things on the field while playing in Australia about Me My religion My colour and much more..This isn’t the first time the crowd is doing this nonsense..How do u stop them ?? #AUSvIND
— Harbhajan Turbanator (@harbhajan_singh) January 10, 2021
Tum karo toh Sarcasm , aur koi Kare toh Racism .
Very unfortunate with what some of the Australian crowd has been doing at the SCG and spoiling the vibes of a good test series. pic.twitter.com/mrDTbX4t7i
— Virender Sehwag (@virendersehwag) January 10, 2021
— Wasim Jaffer (@WasimJaffer14) January 10, 2021
Unacceptable behaviour there is no place for racism, I hope this is dealt in the most severe way. #AUSvIND
— Tom Moody (@TomMoodyCricket) January 10, 2021
As if this Test series wasn't unpredictable enough.
— Snehal Pradhan (@SnehalPradhan) January 10, 2021
Com’on spectators, we can all do better. The game of cricket is about celebrating EVERYONE and not abusing. #Unacceptable
P.s. Getting to watch cricket live from the stadium is a privilege in these difficult times, honour it.
— Shikha Pandey (@shikhashauny) January 10, 2021
Few dafts are doing the Aussie image of a sporting Nation grave harm by barracking or shall we say barking (?) racial abuses…SCG gets poor name by default..not quite Crkt I’m afraid..!!
— Bishan Bedi (@BishanBedi) January 10, 2021
A report in The Daily Telegraph stated, “It’s understood Indian officials say the pair have been abused by members of the public for the past two days, and believe the abuse has been racist in nature… amid suggestions a crowd member at the Randwick end of the ground abused Siraj who was fielding at fine leg at the time.”
“In another instance while the match was still continuing, Indian staff walked around behind where Bumrah was standing in the outfield and spoke to the star quick,” the report added.