Michael Vaughan declines to speak in ECB investigation into the Azeem Rafiq saga at Yorkshire

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EXCLUSIVE: Michael Vaughan declines to speak in ECB investigation into the Azeem Rafiq saga at Yorkshire despite strong links to the governing body, insisting all communication be made through his lawyers

  • Michael Vaughan declined to speak at the ECB probe into the Azeem Rafiq saga
  • The news comes despite his strong links to the ECB as a former England captain 
  • He may face disciplinary action after being accused of discriminatory comments
  • Vaughan is accused of saying ‘too many of you lot’ to four Asian players in 2009
  • He denies the allegations and says he never uttered a racist word at Yorkshire

Michael Vaughan has declined to speak in the ECB’s investigation into Yorkshire’s handling of the Azeem Rafiq saga — despite his strong links with the governing body as a former England captain.

The ex-Yorkshire batsman could face disciplinary action after being accused of saying ‘too many of you lot, we need to do something about it’ to Rafiq and three other Asian players in 2009, allegations he denies.

Vaughan insisted last November that he never uttered a racist word in his 18 years at Yorkshire and expressed sorrow for the hurt Rafiq suffered at Headingley. But he has rejected the opportunity to talk to ECB investigators.

Michael Vaughan declined to speak in the ECB's investigation into Yorkshire's handling of the Azeem Rafiq saga despite his strong links with the governing body as an ex-England captain

Michael Vaughan declined to speak in the ECB’s investigation into Yorkshire’s handling of the Azeem Rafiq saga despite his strong links with the governing body as an ex-England captain

Former Yorkshire player Rafiq accused Vaughan of saying 'too many of you lot, we need to do something about it' to him and three other Asian players in 2009, allegations Vaughan denies

Former Yorkshire player Rafiq accused Vaughan of saying ‘too many of you lot, we need to do something about it’ to him and three other Asian players in 2009, allegations Vaughan denies

Instead, the 47-year-old has insisted all communication with the ECB be conducted through his lawyers. Vaughan has instructed solicitors and is co-operating fully with the ECB.

He also on Tuesday night expressed his support for the reforms proposed at Yorkshire, and his backing for chairman Lord Patel.

‘Yorkshire have the opportunity to be at the forefront of change and turn a bad situation into a positive,’ he wrote in the Daily Telegraph. ‘The best way to do that is to allow Lord Patel to stay in power and the members back him as chairman.’

The ECB’s regulatory team have spoken to many of the key personnel at Yorkshire and should complete their report next month. It could lead to formal disciplinary charges against the county and several of their former and current players, including Vaughan and Gary Ballance.

Vaughan says he never uttered a racist word in his 18 years at Yorkshire - but has rejected the opportunity to talk to ECB investigators and insisted all communication is done via his lawyers

Vaughan says he never uttered a racist word in his 18 years at Yorkshire – but has rejected the opportunity to talk to ECB investigators and insisted all communication is done via his lawyers

Rafiq’s allegations against Vaughan have been corroborated by two of the players present, England spinner Adil Rashid and former Pakistan fast bowler Rana Naved-ul-Hasan.

Ballance was given a new contract last year despite admitting he called Rafiq a ‘P***’ and is due to start the season for Yorkshire, but that could change if he is charged by the ECB.

The Cricketer reported on Tuesday the former England batsman had pulled out of their pre-season tour of the UAE amid talks over his future at Headingley and chairman Lord Patel may seek to move him on.

Patel is concerned that Ballance has not apologised and that there were differences between the evidence he gave in the Yorkshire inquiry and his statements at Rafiq’s employment tribunal. He denied using ‘Kevin’ as slang for a non-white person in the Yorkshire inquiry but admitted it in the employment tribunal.

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