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English cricketer sorry for appearing in blackface at the party

LONDON (AP) – England cricketer Alex Hales apologized on Friday after the publication of a photo showing him in blackface depicting Tupac Shakur at a party in 2009.

The apology comes amid an ongoing crisis in English cricket sparked by whistleblower Azeem Rafiq’s revelations about the racism he suffered while playing at Yorkshire.

Hales, 32, a former English drummer who performs for Nottinghamshire, said in a two-minute Instagram post that he dressed as his favorite musician for a costume party.

“I obviously realize that this is incredibly disrespectful and I want to apologize for the offense this has undoubtedly caused,” he said. “It was incredibly reckless and stupid of me and I want to apologize for that, apologize to the club for the embarrassment this would have caused them.”

Nottinghamshire and the England and Wales Cricket Council are investigating the incident.

“I guess my 20s were full of mistakes like that,” Hales continued, “reckless mistakes off the pitch that… let down family, teammates, friends, close relationships that I have had during my 20. Some of these decisions that I will regret for the rest of my life.

Being away from the spotlight in recent years “gave me a chance to try and improve myself as a human,” he added.

Nottinghamshire was already investigating Hales regarding his dog’s name. Rafiq alleged that his Yorkshire team-mate Gary Ballance used “Kevin” as a general derogatory term for all people of color, that it was “an open secret in the English locker room” and that Hales named his dog Kevin because he was black.

Hales denied this allegation.

“Regarding the allegations regarding the dog, an investigation is underway at the club so I cannot go into details, but I would like to reiterate what I said in my statement the other day. all forms of racism and discrimination.

Cricket stakeholders met on Friday and pledged to take “far-reaching measures to tackle discrimination and promote inclusion and diversity at all levels,” they said in a statement released by the BCE.

Leaders, from top to bottom to the county’s recreational cricket, said they have discussed ways to eliminate discrimination and improve governance. They plan to meet again next week.

“Racism and discrimination are a scourge on our game,” they said in the statement. “To Azeem and to all those who have experienced any form of discrimination, we are very sorry. Our sport did not welcome you, our game did not accept you as we should have. We wholeheartedly apologize for your suffering.

“Our game must regain your confidence.

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