The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Waugh backs quota comments

Sydney: Australian skipper Steve Waugh on Thursday backed controversial comments by Murray Goodwin that Zimbabwe’s black players were getting a free ride into the country’s Test cricket team because of their colour.

Goodwin, now with Western Australia, has been charged by his state association with a breach of Cricket Australia’s Code of Behaviour for making the comments.

Punishment for players found to have breached the public comment rule range from a reprimand to a match ban or a fine of up to $4,000 for a first offence.

“It sounds really racist but in fact it’s the truth and that’s a sad state of affairs because these guys don’t have to perform as well as the European guys to get a game,” Waugh said.

Waugh, speaking to reporters ahead of Friday’s second Test here with Zimbabwe, said while cricket threw up a myriad of talking points, the sensitivity of some of the game’s administrators and conduct codes left players in a Catch-22 situation.

Waugh said players often censured themselves to avoid similar strife experienced by Goodwin. “Even when you’re out there if you do something not 100 per cent correct in the eyes of everyone, you’re considered a rebel,” he said. “But then on the other side of that is they say there’s no characters left in the game any more, so you can’t win either way.


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