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Michael Vaughan axed from BBC appearance amid claims he racially abused Azeem Rafiq and other Asian cricketers

MICHAEL VAUGHAN has been axed by the BBC amid claims he racially abused Azeem Rafiq and other Asian cricketers during his time at Yorkshire. The ex-England captain, 47, is alleged to have told Rafiq and two other Asian players that there were ‘too many of you lot, we need to do something about it’. Vaughan […] ...

MICHAEL VAUGHAN has been axed by the BBC amid claims he racially abused Azeem Rafiq and other Asian cricketers during his time at Yorkshire.

The ex-England captain, 47, is alleged to have told Rafiq and two other Asian players that there were ‘too many of you lot, we need to do something about it’.

PA

Michael Vaughan has been axed by the BBC over alleged racial abuse of Azeem Rafiq and other Asian cricketers – with the ex-England captain ‘categorically denying’ the claims[/caption]

Getty

Vaughan is claimed to have racially abused Azeem Rafiq and other Asian cricketers during his time at Yorkshire[/caption]

Vaughan revealed he ‘completely and categorically denies’ the claims.

But has now been axed by the BBC and will not present Monday’s episode of the Tuffers and Vaughan Show.

In a statement, the BBC said: “The BBC takes any allegations of racism extremely seriously.

“The allegation against Michael Vaughan pre-dates his time working for the BBC.

“We were not part of the investigation conducted by Yorkshire County Cricket Club and we have had no access to the subsequent report.

“However, we were made aware of a single allegation which Michael strongly denies and we have been monitoring the situation closely.

“We have made the editorial decision that Michael won’t appear as a presenter on 5 live’s Tuffers and Vaughan Show on Monday.

“The show focuses on discussion around current cricketing matters and given his personal involvement, we need to ensure we maintain the impartiality of the program.

“We remain in discussion with Michael and his team.”

Former Yorkshire and England captain Vaughan earlier revealed he was named in Yorkshire’s internal report but ‘totally denies any allegation of racism’.

Vaughan said he was alleged to have told Rafiq and two other Asian players as they walked onto the field together that there were ‘too many of you lot, we need to do something about it’.

He refutes the accusations, writing in his Telegraph column: “I completely and categorically deny that I ever said those words.”I will fight to the end to prove I am not that person.”

The former England captain added that Yorkshire have dealt with the controversy ‘terribly’.

Vaughan wrote: “It is clear that Azeem has endured a lot.

“It is not only right but essential that his experiences and his perspective are heard. There are unquestionably lessons to be learned.

“Yorkshire have dealt with this terribly. It is a good cricket club and… I hope I can be part of the movement to rebrand the club and people will eventually look back on this time and say it changed for the better.”

The county appointed Lord Kamlesh Patel of Bradford as their new director and chair after Roger Hutton resigned on Friday morning.

On his departure, Hutton urged Yorkshire chief executive Mark Arthur and director of cricket Martyn Moxon to follow him out the door.

But the pair are digging in their heels.

Rex

Gary Ballance admitted using a racial slur against Azeem Rafiq on Wednesday[/caption]

On Thursday, Yorkshire were suspended from hosting international and other big matches at Headingley while most of their sponsors have turned their backs on the county.

Ex-Yorkshire batter Gary Ballance has also been ‘indefinitely suspended’ from England duty.

On Wednesday evening, Ballance admitted using a racial slur against Rafiq, with a club report deeming comments of this nature to have been made ‘in the spirit of friendly banter’.

Ex-England star Monty Panesar slammed the use of racist terms being passed off as ‘banter’, while accusing bosses of ‘completely mishandling’ the matter.

Fuming Health Secretary Sajid Javid said ‘heads should roll’ after it emerged a Yorkshire panel determined the repeated use of the word ‘P**i’ against spinner Rafiq was ‘banter’.

Rafiq is scheduled to give evidence to MPs in person on November 16 as part of a probe into his allegations.

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