First showing of PNG art by Grim Jordan
How Belden learned the lesson of kindness

England cricketer's ugly outburst a racist slur

| Come the Revolution

Authr and journalist Akex Mkychell O(Scott Powick)
Author, journalist and acclaimed political observer, Alex Mitchell (Scott Powick)

Prologue by Keith Jackson

NOOSA - Was the recent on-field cricket incident involving England fast bowler Ollie Robinson, just a display of extraordinarily bad manners or the product of barely disguised racism?

Alex Mitchell certainly brought to life my own thoughts about the matter in constructing a fine narrative that builds a case for the latter.

I'd believe our Papua New Guinean readers would have something to say about this.

“I'd be delighted if my humble words are reproduced for your cricket-loving supporters,” Alex told me. “I'm sure that many will be appalled about the evil racism in sport.

“Would Robinson would have made the same comment about amazing Australian batsmen such as Don Bradman, Bobby Simpson, Allan Border or Ricky Ponting?

“Probably not, because they were white, Christian and not born in Pakistan.”

At PNG Attitude we have more than a passing interest in racism. But first a warning: Robinson’s ugly unapologetic send-off, repeated here, was not for the faint-hearted.


TWEED HEADS - England bowler Ollie Robinson called Australian Test hero Usman Khawaja a “fucking prick” after bowling him out in the First Test at Edgbaston.

Robinson refused to apologise after yelling “fuck off, you fucking prick” after dismissing the Pakistani-born batsman who scored a Test-saving 141 runs.

This is not Robinson’s first racist outburst. And he was cheered by the Barmy Army, commentators and the following day’s media.

In Australia, cricket writers either ignored the incident or excused it by saying Robinson was moved by “the heat of the moment”.

In the past, cricket was regarded as a gentleman’s game. A common expression all over the cricket world – among both men and women from white, brown and black countries – was “it isn’t cricket”.

That expression has died and so has the game. It is dogged by match-fixing, gambling, tax evasion, organised crime and all manner of corruption.

Attempts to banish betting from the game has been met by raucous barracking from commentators, some players and the gambling industry itself, particularly in poverty-stricken India where it is flush with billionaires.

Robinson’s raise to fame and fortune as an MCC hero is interesting, and deserves to be told.

He was born in South Africa. After African National Congress (ANC) leader Nelson Mandela was released from Robben Island prison, Robinson moved to New Zealand and later to England.

In 2012, when he was making his Test debut, he posted a rancid selection of racist and sexist tweets, later saying they were “thoughtless”.

They included one which said “my new muslim (sic) is the bomb”, another which said “a lot of girls need to learn the art of class” and a third which said “females who play video games actually tend to have more sex than the girls who don’t”, and also wrote, “I wonder if Asian people put smileys like this #racism”.

Nasser Hussain, who also suffered racist abuse when he captained England, said: “If you’re going to wear T-shirts about anti-sexism and racism, you can’t be doing this. It’s just not good enough, it’s just not on. I’ve read the tweets. You should never say those sorts of things whether you’re 18 or 28.”

England cricket writer Andy Bull was a lone voice of disapproval in the media, writing: “Ollie Robinson’s offensive tweets prove English cricket still has much to learn”.

Robinson was sacked by Kent Cricket Club, and two years later he was sacked by Yorkshire’s Aboriginal coach Jason Gillespie for “consistently displaying behaviour that isn’t professional”.

In 2017 England cricket officials fast-tracked Robinson’s transfer to the UK where he was celebrated and urged to “clean up his act”.

The cleansing fell apart on the third day of the First Test at Edgbaston, but England crowds hailed Ollie as a “hero” while the Australian media seemed to ignore it.

But Australian cricket fans didn’t, and they will give Ollie what he deserves should he ever be selected to play at the MCG, SCG, Gabba, Adelaide or the WACA.

As former Australian captain Allan Border was quick to say: “The Aussies won’t forget, that’s for sure.”


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Paul Oates

“Play up and play the game. It's not whether you win or lose, it's how you play the game.”

Stephen Charteris

Try saying that to a copper next time you are pulled over for a spot check and see what happens.

Such outbursts should be an instant red card and loss of match fee. There is no place for foul mouthed louts in cricket.

Bernard Corden

John Barnes, the former Liverpool Football Club player, who was involved in the infamous banana incident during a Liverpool versus Everton derby game, has written extensively on the subject and proclaimed, “The only way to destroy racism is to destroy capitalism.”

It is also worth noting that following the Hillsborough stadium disaster in 1989, the Hillsborough Family Support Group received an invoice from Liverpool Football Club for the hire of meeting rooms at the club's Anfield Road stadium.

Bernard Corden

"Serious sport has nothing to do with fair play. It is bound up with hatred, jealousy, boastfulness, disregard of all rules and sadistic pleasure in witnessing violence. In other words, it is war minus the shooting" - Collected Essays, Journalism and Letters of George Orwell, 1903-1950.

Lindsay F Bond

Website Bing was no help, so instead to the big 'G' (Google) one must go to find example of height of reach and depth of respect in that activity of humane engagement named Cricket.

For my favoured sports photograph from the late Albert Speer (of fame from the 1951 Mount Lamington eruption): 'Sasembata cricket playing, Saiho 1951':

A gathering game, a pitch principled, a display distinguished, a volcano erupting.

And a photograph showing cricket of a more respectful and well dressed engagement on Kwato Island around 1905.

William Dunlop

Oink, oink Ollie! Wallowing with your kin in the proverbial. Em tasol.

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