Cricket

England players committed to ‘improving ourselves’ in wake of Ollie Robinson row, says James Anderson

James Anderson says that England’s players are committed to “improving ourselves as people”, as the build-up towards Thursday’s second LV= Insurance Test against New Zealand at Edgbaston continues to be overshadowed by the emergence of historic offensive posts on social media.
In the wake of Ollie Robinson‘s suspension for a series of derogatory tweets from 2012 and 2013, the ECB has indicated that further action may be taken by the board, after other players in the national set-up were found to have posted unsavoury content in the past, including one player who made racist remarks as a 16-year-old.

An ECB spokesperson said: “Since we were alerted to offensive tweets last week, a number of historical social media posts by other individuals have been questioned publicly as well. There is no place for discrimination in our sport, and we are committed to taking relevant and appropriate action where required.

“Given the concerns which have been raised are clearly now broader than a single case, the ECB Board will discuss how we deal with issues over historical social media material in a timely and appropriate manner. Each case will be considered on an individual basis, looking at all the facts. We will assess cases with the ECB Board before making further statements.”

Anderson, who will take over from Sir Alastair Cook as England’s most-capped player if selected for his 162nd Test, admitted on Tuesday that there was a nervous atmosphere within the dressing-room, given the speed with which the issue has escalated, following the unearthing of Robinson’s tweets on the opening day of his Test debut at Lord’s last week.

“It is a difficult time,” Anderson said. “As players we are trying to learn from this, and realise it’s important to try to get educated around these issues. We continue to do that with the ECB and PCA [Professional Cricketers’ Association], we’ve been doing workshops before the series to improve ourselves as people, basically. To try to make sure this doesn’t happen.”

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