“Protesting, and standing up for what you believe in, is noble and courageous – and something I would never disapprove of”
Last Updated: 10/06/20 6:41pm
West Indies captain Jason Holder says his team will discuss making a ‘show of solidarity’ in support of the Black Lives Matter movement during the upcoming three-Test series against England.
Several elite athletes have spoken out about racism in sport and society after the death of George Floyd, who was killed after police officer Derek Chauvin knelt on his neck for eight minutes and 46 seconds in Minneapolis on May 25.
Asked about the prospect of taking the knee when they play England in the first Test at the Ageas Bowl on July 8, Holder said: “It definitely – probably – will be discussed among us and we’ll definitely decide how we’ll go forward as a team with it.
“I just want to make sure whatever we do, if we do anything, that it is done the right way. Whatever point we make, if we do decide to show some sort of solidarity with it, we’ll make sure everyone is on the same page.
“But I don’t want to sit here and speak for the other members of the team without consulting them.”
Elaborating further on the protests that have taken place across the world following Floyd’s death, Holder described people supporting the cause as “noble and courageous”.
“It [racism] is something that will probably be an ongoing discussion, probably way past our lifetimes,” added Holder. “I think the greater message that could be taken for this entire experience is unity.
“Regardless of your race or religion, I think this is a situation for us all to unite as one.
“What has happened recently has definitely impacted the world, and the response from people around the world has been tremendous.
“We must acknowledge it. Protesting, and standing up for what you believe in, is noble and courageous – and something I would never disapprove of.
“I think it’s a perfect time for people to really educate themselves on what goes on in the day-to-day experiences of people around the world, and make a change.
“Only when you educate yourself, can you have a better sense of what goes on around you.
“We must all come together; It’s an ongoing debate, but equality and unity is my main takeaway from this.”
Holder and the rest of the West Indies touring squad arrived in Manchester on Tuesday and are currently in a 14-day quarantine-training camp at Emirates Old Trafford ahead of the scheduled first Test against England on July 8.
Meanwhile, on Wednesday, the ICC – who Holder praised as doing an “outstanding job in dealing with matters of racism” – said it would take a ‘common sense approach’ to deal with any potential Black Lives Matter protests by players.
The ICC usually does not allow players to display messages “relating to political, religious or racial activities” but has joined soccer’s governing body FIFA in being governed by ‘common sense’.
“The ICC stands against racism and is proud of the diversity of our sport,” an ICC spokesperson said in a statement mailed to Reuters.
“We support players using their platform to appropriately express their support for a more equitable society.
“We will exercise a common sense approach to the implementation of regulations in relation to this issue and they will be assessed on a case by case basis by the match officials.”