Yorkshire chairman Kamlesh Patel said on Thursday he had received “racist” letters following Azeem Rafiq’s allegations of racist abuse and terrorism while playing for the region. On the day of the Test Cricket returned to the Headingley headquarters in Yorkshire, Patel also revealed the area would have been a bust but for England playing in Leeds again. Former Pakistani sister Rafiq first filed allegations of racism and terrorism in September 2020, related to her two allegations in Yorkshire.
Rafiq testified before the House of Commons last year, sparking pressure on Yorkshire over their previous failure to take any disciplinary action.
That eventually led to a mass-out of senior boardroom figures and coaching staff.
The Cricket Council of England and Wales is also threatening to remove lucrative international matches from Headingley unless changes are made.
The reforms promoted by new chairman Patel killed what could be a financial disaster for Yorkshire.
But the issue is not over, with allegations of disciplinary action being taken against the group by the ECB and the “individual population”, which has not yet been mentioned by government officials.
Patel, speaking on the first day of the third Test between England and New Zealand at Headingley on Thursday, was asked on BBC Radio whether he had received a racist mail.
“Racism,” he replied. “We have a very small but very loud group of individuals who do not believe that racism happened in this group.
“I think we have to go beyond that denial, racism is happening in society, of course it happens in this group.
Patel, however, added: “Ninety to 95 per cent of the members and people I met on the road and on the train have expressed their gratitude for doing what they are doing and have been very supportive.
“We know that our misogyny, discrimination, power abuses and these things happen. It happens here bad.
“We have to change for the better and I think we are.”
Asked if Yorkshire would have gone bust if they had removed Cricket Test as punishment, Patel said: “In simple terms, yes. I think we will have.
“If the test matches or international competitions don’t come back here, we will go bankrupt.”
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