Yorkshire have confirmed documents relating to allegations of racism against the county cricket club were deleted under the previous regime. A Cricket Discipline Commission hearing will start in London next week but no Yorkshire representatives will be present after they admitted to four amended charges brought by the England and Wales Cricket Board over the club’s handling of former player Azeem Rafiq‘s allegations. It has now been confirmed that one of the charges relates to the deletion or destruction of both electronic and paper documents but while this occurred before current chairman Kamlesh Patel took over, the county would not say who was responsible.
“After 5 November 2021, it was discovered that emails and documents, both held electronically by the club and in paper copy, had been irretrievably deleted from both servers and laptops and otherwise destroyed,” a club statement said.
“After a thorough independent investigation it was established that the deletion and destruction of documents date from a time period prior to the appointment of Lord Patel and relate to the allegations of racism and the club’s response to those allegations.
“The club is not prepared to conjecture publicly as to why this occurred, who was responsible or the motivation for doing so.”
Next week’s disciplinary hearing will start on Wednesday but the only charged individual still set to appear is ex-England captain Michael Vaughan.
Andrew Gale, Matthew Hoggard, Tim Bresnan, Richard Pyrah and John Blain have refused to engage with the process.
The Cricket Discipline Commission panel will still hear the charges against those five in their absence.
Gary Ballance, also charged, has already admitted using racially discriminatory language and will not appear.
Pakistan-born Rafiq, 31, first raised allegations of racism and bullying in September 2020, related to his two spells at Yorkshire.
He told a British parliamentary committee in December 2022 that the abuse he and his family had faced had forced him to leave the UK.
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