Victoria players accused of racial abuse

Around 10 Victorian players are under investigation for allegedly racially abusing players of Indian descent during a match, according to a media report.

updated: March 18, 2010 09:12 IST
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Around 10 Victorian cricketers are under investigation for allegedly racially abusing players of Indian descent during a match on Saturday, according to a media report.

The Geelong Cricket Association has launched a probe after receiving an official written complaint from the Waurn Ponds Cricket Club against opposition club Thomson, The Geelong Advertiser reported.

The complaint alleges six Waurn Ponds players of Indian decent were subjected to a series of racially motivated verbal attacks during Saturday's fourth-grade qualifying final at Grinter Reserve No.2.

Witnesses claimed some of the players were reduced to tears and were even considering giving up the sport. It is alleged the comments were made during Waurn Ponds' batting innings, with requests to stop from both the umpire and several aggrieved players allegedly going unheeded.

Waurn Ponds, based at Deakin University, comprises a strong core of international students in its lower grades, with more than a dozen registered players of Indian descent.

While the complaint did not name any players accused of the taunts, it named Thomson player Paul Welsh.

Thomson on Monday denied the allegations and said it would support the GCA investigation.

GCA vice president Garry McPherson, who will chair the investigation, confirmed Waurn Ponds had lodged a complaint.

"We've received a letter requesting an investigation and that process will be going forward this week," McPherson said.

"From that investigation hearing we will determine a course of action as to whether there's a case to be found at all, initially, and then any possible penalties or conciliation that may need to be undertaken.

"All these things will come out from the meeting on Wednesday night," he added.

Waurn Ponds lost the match by 13 runs. Thomson batted first, setting Waurn Ponds 213 for victory off 40 overs.

McPherson said Thomson had co-operated and would make players and officials available for the hearing.

Thomson president Laurie McGovern categorically denied the accusations.

"There has been a complaint from Waurn Ponds written by (Waurn Ponds president and Advertiser sports reporter) Daniel Breen and it is a letter that is strenuously denied by Thomson Cricket Club and we will support any GCA investigation," McGovern said.