Sussex pacer Ollie Robinson, who made a debut for England in the first Test against New Zealand at Lord’s last week, has been suspended from international cricket after a series of racist and sexist Twitter messages he made some eight years back re-emerged, the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) announced Sunday (June 6).
Robinson will definitely miss the second Test against New Zealand at Edgbaston starting June 10.
The 27-year-old’s impressive debut against the Kiwis has been overshadowed by the re-emergence of racist and sexist social media messages he had posted as a teenager in 2012 and 2013.
“England and Sussex bowler Ollie Robinson has been suspended from all international cricket pending the outcome of a disciplinary investigation following historic tweets he posted in 2012 and 2013,” said an ECB statement.
Robinson’s debut in the drawn first Test at Lord’s was impressive both with the bat and bowl. He returned bowling figures of 4-75 in the first innings and scalped 3 wickets for 26 runs in the second innings while scoring useful 42 with the bat.
Robinson issued a statement after play on Wednesday, saying he was “embarrassed” and “ashamed” by the posts. “I want to make it clear that I’m not racist and I’m not sexist,” he said.
Robinson’s posts in 2012 and 2013 suggested Muslim were linked to terrorism and also made derogatory comments on women and people of Asian origin.
The 8-year-old messages came to prominence on Wednesday before the two teams came together showing their opposition to discrimination. The English players wore T-shirts stating ‘Cricket is a game for everyone’.
England captain Joe Root said (about Robinson’s tweets), “I couldn’t believe them, personally.”
Root said, “He has had an exceptional debut…He’s showed high levels of skill and he’s definitely got the game that can be successful in Test cricket.”
Root, however, insisted: “In regards to the stuff that’s happened off the field, it’s not acceptable within our game. We all know that.”
When a teenager posts abusive, sexist, racist tweets, what is the air he is breathing? I believe we need to investigate whether there is/was a climate around the game where it was deemed okay to do so. #OllieRobinson
— Harsha Bhogle (@bhogleharsha) June 3, 2021
The English captain, however, insisted “we’ve got to move forward from this, learn from this and make sure it doesn’t happen again.”
Robinson is free to play for Sussex, if selected, during his international suspension.