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AFL player Mabior Chol has called out a racist message he was sent on Instagram in the days after his decision to switch clubs from Richmond to the Gold Coast Suns.
The 24-year-old shared the private message he was sent via a screenshot on his Instagram story, with both the Suns and the Tigers quick to denounce the message.
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“Wow imagine being this low…” Chol captioned the screenshot.
Chol played 31 games and kicked 24 goals for the Tigers after making his debut in 2016, with the young gun only held back from more opportunities due ti the strength of Richmond's side at the time.
The Suns swooped on the 24-year-old in unrestricted free agency, and were quick to defend and support their star signing.
“The Gold Coast Suns wholeheartedly condemn racist comments made towards one of our players via social media,” the club's statement read.
“It’s simply not good enough, there is no place for racism in sport or society, it has to stop.
“As a club and community, we must live up to our mantra of Challenge Accepted and call out racist behaviour, when we witness it.
“We encourage people to better educate themselves and those around them, on the impact racist behaviour has on the victims and their family.
“We need everyone to accept the challenge and stamp out racism.”
As a club, we're committed to the fight against racism. pic.twitter.com/ubLCdRypmW
— Gold Coast Suns (@GoldCoastSUNS) October 7, 2021
— Richmond FC 🐯 (@Richmond_FC) October 7, 2021
Richmond shared the message on their own social media account.
"We support Mabior Chol in calling out this disgusting behaviour and stand with him and @GoldCoastSUNS in condemning racism and discrimination," the club wrote.
Chol's is the latest in a long line of examples of black and Indigenous players being targeted with racist abuse on social media.
Fellow South Sudanese player Aliir Aliir was sent a similarly disgusting message after a match against Adelaide earlier this year, while Essendon's Anthony McDonald-Tipingwuti also spoke out.
“As a society we should never define anyone by the colour of their skin, religion, race, culture or ability. In Australia we are one people and a diverse community that should be galvanising together instead of ripping each other apart,” McDonald-Tipungwuti wrote on Instagram.
“My family and I, like many others, are separated by distance and Covid restrictions which has made this year very difficult for all. We all feel isolated and we should be using our words to unite us in the face of adversity.”
Mabior Chol excited for Gold Coast Suns AFL switch
Chol's move to Gold Coast was confirmed last Friday, with the end of second round compensation pick heading to Richmond currently No.38.
In order to preserve that selection, the Tigers will attempt to secure veteran defender Robbie Tarrant via a trade with North Melbourne, rather than using free agency.
"Gold Coast was the club that I wanted to go to and to be able to go there now and be a Suns player is exciting," Chol said.
"The Suns have a really young list and I think that is the most exciting thing and a lot of good players too.
"I'm just really grateful that the club has shown a lot of interest in me and I'm the player for them. Hopefully I can pay them back for all the respect and trust they've shown me to go after me."
Chol played 31 games in six seasons at Punt Road but was unable to break into the Richmond team for any of the club's three premierships under Damien Hardwick.
The 24-year-old played 10 games in 2021, including an eye-catching four-goal performance in the Tigers' win over Brisbane in round 18.
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