Alex Hales denies Azeem Rafiq's allegations of naming his dog with intentions of racism

Mayank Kumar

Mayank Kumar

Author| Nov 18, 4:57 AM

Image: Twitter
Image: Twitter

England batsman Alex Hales has “categorically” denied the allegations of naming his dog “Kevin” with racial connotation as alleged by the former Yorkshire player Azeem Rafiq during his testimony to the Digital, Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS) Committee.

However, he expressed his sympathy to Azeem Rafiq for enduring “harrowing” episodes of racism while being a player for Yorkshire county. He also agreed to Azeem’s point that there should be no place for any sort of discrimination in the game of cricket and assured his cooperation in the investigation if he will be asked for.

"Having heard the allegations made against me, I categorically and absolutely deny there was any racial connotation in the naming of my dog," Hales, who plays for Nottinghamshire, said in a statement.

"I entirely respect and have huge sympathy for both the stance Azeem Rafiq has taken and what he has had to endure. His evidence was harrowing.

"There is no place for racism or discrimination of any kind in cricket and I will gladly co-operate with any investigation the game's authorities choose to hold."

Azeem had alleged that Gary Ballance used to call players of colour by the name “Kevin” and went a step further saying that Hales went on to give his dog which was black in colour, the same name, to establish how racism was “normalised” by the players.

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