Former cricketer Michael Vaughan has been stood down from his BBC radio show on Monday night amid allegations of racism made by his former Yorkshire team-mate Azeem Rafiq .
Vaughan revealed in his Daily Telegraph column on Thursday that he had been named in a report into Rafiq’s allegations of institutional racism at the county, but categorically denied telling a group of team-mates of Asian ethnicity there were “too many of you lot, we need to do something about it”.
A new report from ESPNCricinfo says former Pakistan international all-rounder Rana Naved-ul-Hasan, who played for the county as an overseas player in 2008 and 2009, confirmed he too heard the comments. The report also states the 43-year-old is prepared to give evidence on the matter to any interested inquiry.
The BBC has acted to remove Vaughan from Monday’s edition of the ‘Tuffers and Vaughan’ show on 5 Live.
“The show focuses on topical discussion around current cricketing matters and given his personal involvement, we need to ensure we maintain the impartiality of the programme,” a corporation spokesperson said.
“We remain in discussion with Michael and his team.”
Vaughan, who also works across BBC television and radio as a commentator in addition to the radio show, told the PA news agency at his home in Knutsford, Cheshire: “We’re in different times. I’ve done my piece (in the Telegraph) last night and I stand by what I say. I’ve never said anything racist in my life.
“I know that in my life, I’ve never said anything racist to anybody. So, that’s what I stand by.”
Speaking to ESPNCricinfo in 2020, when Rafiq’s wide-ranging claims had only just become public knowledge, Rana said: “I fully support what Azeem said and this has been the case with me as well.
“I never spoke about it because, as foreigners, we were temporary and somehow I managed to accept the way it is. So I just focused on playing cricket. I never wanted to jeopardise my contracts.
“At times I used to feel bad, but I decided to ignore it because I knew I was not going to live there permanently. But I know what Azeem went through.”