England Test captain Joe Root has admitted that the team has had to face up to some ‘ugly truths’ in the last few days, as offensive historical tweets by many England players have come to the fore.
What began with Ollie Robinson apologizing for ‘racist’ and ‘sexist’ tweets he posted in 2012 and 2013 has turned into a full-blown controversy, as other big names have also been dragged into the matter.
Speaking to BBC Sport ahead of England’s second Test against New Zealand, Joe Root conceded that these are challenging times for the team, but asserted they are committed to moving forward.
"We want to move forward in a really positive way. We've had to face up to some ugly truths this past week or so and there will be challenges moving forward. But the group of players we have now is very much committed to moving the game forward, to making it a better place, making it more inclusive and educating ourselves further.
“We're going to have to front up to what has happened, but ultimately we want to move forward in a really positive way, to keep going on this journey we've started of trying to better out sport. We will continue to do that because that's how we all feel."
We are very keen to make a change: Joe Root
Joe Root added that there had been numerous discussions over how the team can do better and bring about a change in attitude.
Joe Root asserted that, as a side, England wants to be inclusive and diverse.
"All we want to do as a side is keep trying to find ways of making it better, making it more inclusive, as diverse as we can, and a game for everyone. We've spent a long time talking about it - how we can make a change, how we can make a difference.
"As players at the top of the sport, we know that it's going to feed down from what we do. We're very aware of that and we're very keen to make change, and to take the game in a really positive direction.”
England has already suspended Robinson (27) from international cricket for the offensive tweets he posted in 2012 and 2013.
The pacer’s historical posts went viral on the day that he made his Test debut against New Zealand at Lord’s.