In wake of the recent controversy where a former Yorkshire player Azeem Rafiq accused Michael Vaughan of racial abuse, BBC has dropped the former England captain from the Ashes coverage team. Notably, BBC had also axed Vaughan from the ‘Tuffers and Vaughan’ show soon after the controversy came to light.
While Vaughan has stood firm on his stance of not engaging in any sort of racist activities, BBC said it would not be ethically right for them to include Vaughan in the team.
“While he is involved in a significant story in cricket, for editorial reasons we do not believe that it would be appropriate for Michael Vaughan to have a role in our Ashes team or wider coverage of the sport at the moment.
“We require our contributors to talk about relevant topics and his involvement in the Yorkshire story represents a conflict of interest, ” read a statement.
Not only Vaughan but several England cricketers, including Alex Hales and Gary Ballance’s name also popped up during the controversy.
Meanwhile, the Ashes is set to get underway on December 8 in Brisbane. Both England and Australia have announced the squad for the marquee series. However, there is some uncertainty over the participation of Tim Paine, who recently stepped down from his post following his involvement in a sexting scandal. The new skipper is yet to be named.
England squad for the Ashes: Joe Root (c), James Anderson, Jonathan Bairstow, Dom Bess, Stuart Broad, Rory Burns, Jos Buttler, Zak Crawley, Haseeb Hameed, Dan Lawrence, Jack Leach, Dawid Malan, Craig Overton, Ollie Pope, Ollie Robinson, Chris Woakes, Mark Wood.
Australia Test squad: Tim Paine, Pat Cummins (VC), Cameron Green, Marcus Harris, Josh Hazlewood, Travis Head, Usman Khawaja, Marnus Labuschagne, Nathan Lyon, Michael Neser, Jhye Richardson, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Mitchell Swepson, David Warner