Yorkshire captain Andrew Gale was charged with a racism offence by the England & Wales Cricket Board (ECB) on Wednesday for his altercation with Ashwell Prince in the recent match between Yorkshire and Lancashire in the County Championship.
Gale is reported to have told Prince to go back to his own country in addition to using the term “Kolpak” in a derogatory manner towards the South African. This resulted in the ECB spoiling Yorkshire’s title celebrations, their first title in 13 years, by not allowing Gale to take any part in the trophy presentation ceremony.
The match officials had brought a Level 2 charge and Gale had been suspended for 2 matches, but the ECB were not satisfied with the punishment and intend to charge Gale with a Level 3 offence. Yorkshire firmly believe that there is no racial connotation to the term “Kolpak” and are assembling a strong legal team in order to appeal against the charge laid on Gale.
The incident in question had taken place on the third evening of the Roses match on September 3. With Yorkshire pushing for victory, Prince’s sledging and timewasting tactics at the crease had infuriated the entire Yorkshire team. Gale, then, confronted Prince and made his displeasure at Prince’s tactics known, resulting in the South African telling Gale to get back to his fielding position.
This compounded matters as the Yorkshire skipper immediately shot back at Prince by telling him to go back to his own country and also made an obnoxious reference to Prince’s Kolpak status, which enables the latter to ply his trade in England as a non-overseas player.
While Prince had immediately indicated to the umpires that Gale might be guilty of using racist language, it is unclear as of now whether it was Prince who called for the matter to be taken further.Published 18 Sep 2014, 18:58 IST