Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
Yorkshire captain Andrew Gale has revealed that he felt extremely hurt when people started calling him a racist after he verbally abused Lancashire batsman Ashwell Prince last month.
Gale, who was banned for four matches and ordered to attend an anger management course by the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB), admitted that it was the “toughest time” of his career.
It is understood that Gale told Prince, who is from South Africa, to “f*** off back to your own country, you Kolpak f*****”.
“At a time when it should have been one of the happiest times of my career, it’s turned out to be the toughest time,” he told the Yorkshire Post. “I am not a racist, and that tag was what hurt me most throughout the whole process.
“I have coached cricketers all over the world, and the work that I’ve done within the Yorkshire community and charities backs that up; that’s why it hurt so much. There were times when I didn’t want to leave the house after being branded a racist, but my family showed me great support that helped me through.”
Gale has apologised numerous times for verbally abusing Prince and hopes that people will remember the recently concluded county season for Yorkshire’s triumph in Division One of the County Championship rather than his misdemeanour.
“I regret the way in which I reacted that day and I have always prided myself on being a role model to my fellow pros and all young cricketers I coach,” he said. “I’d like to think that I have always played the game hard but fair, and I always endeavour to play every game to win.
“I am still immensely proud of what we have achieved this season, and I hope the whole situation hasn’t detracted from Yorkshire’s success. Yorkshire were brilliant throughout the whole process.”