Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
Angus Porter, who is the chief executive of the Professional Cricketers’ Association, has apologised for his earlier comments about England all-rounder Moeen Ali.
His comments came after Ali was booed during the one-off Twenty20 International against India at Edgbaston.
Ali’s father, Munir, stated that it was “disgraceful” for the fans to be treating his son like that and claimed that it occurred due to Moeen’s Muslim faith and Pakistani heritage.
After the game, Porter said that Ali should see it as something “positive” since players would “rather be booed than ignored”.
“His dad offered his view sincerely and I hope it doesn’t stoke the fire because he was just standing up for his boy,” he had told the Press Association. “There is an element of taking it as a compliment. You are more likely to boo someone when you think they are someone to be feared. Take it as a positive, you’d rather be booed than ignored.
“Supporters pay their money and they are entitled to express an opinion, but I don’t think it’s exclusively about Moeen. You see other players get booed. Jimmy Anderson gets booed when he goes to Yorkshire and it’s disappointing when players are performing as entertainers and doing their best. It would be great if spectators saw the positives.”
However, he later sought to clarify his remarks after being accused of downplaying the issue of racism.
“The booing was poor and racist behaviour is completely unacceptable,” he told ESPNcricinfo. “What I was trying to do by my earlier comments is calm a situation and I realise that they had completely the opposite effect. Moeen does not want to take the matter further and we fully respect that.
“But I want to add that I unequivocally condemn any form of racism. I’m not sure any of us fully understand the motives behind what happened but it is our shared responsibility that should it happen again to tackle it properly.”