Cricket commentator breaks down in tears during live cross

Andrew Reid
·4-min read
Pictured here, former Windies captain Michael Holding is brought to tears on air.
Michael Holding broke down discussing his family's experiences of racism. Pic: Sky Sports

Cricket commentator Michael Holding has been reduced to tears live on air, while discussing his experiences with racism during the Test match between England and the West Indies.

On day one of the Test match, the former Windies captain delivered an impassioned plea for society to help stamp out racism in everyday life.

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Holding was then interviewed by Sky News' Mark Austin on day two, where he broke down on camera while discussing the racism his parents had experienced throughout their lives.

"To be honest, that emotional part came when I started thinking of my parents. And it's coming again now," Holding said before pausing to gather his composure.

"Mark, I know what my parents went through.

"My mother's family stopped talking to her because her husband was too dark.

"I know what they went through, and that came back to me immediately," he added as tears began to stream down his face.

Holding said he hoped such tragedies like the death of George Floyd would bring about meaningful and long-term change in the fight for racial equality.

"I hope people understand exactly what I'm saying, and exactly where I'm coming from. I'm 66 years old. I have seen it, I have been through it and I have experienced it with other people.

"It cannot continue like this - we have to understand that people are people."

Seen here, Windies great Michael Holding and the current team taking a knee before the England Test.
West Indies cricket legend Michael Holding (pictured left) and the West Indies cricket team taking a knee (pictured right) before the return of Test cricket in England. (Images: Sky Sports/Getty Images)

Powerful racism speech stuns cricket world

Holding and England cricketer Ebony Rainford-Brent left the cricket world speechless a day earlier after revealing the heartbreaking toll racism has taken on them.

The Sky Sports pundits combined in a ‘Black Cricketers Matter’ movement to end racism within the game on a day that saw the West Indies and England squads take a knee in support of the Black Lives Matter movement.

The legendary fast-bowler and commentator recounted his first experience of racism, while playing cricket, which happened in his first tour of Australia.

“I went to Australia on my very first tour, 75-76, I had never experienced racism while on the cricket field...but I heard comments being passed [from the crowd] and I just thought, ‘these people are sick,’” Holding said on Sky Sports.

Holding said the very same thing happened during his time in England the following tour and racism became a reoccurring scar throughout his career.

The icon then went on to talk about how the George Floyd experience impacted him and explained how institutional racism must be eradicated before humanity can move forward together.

“Everybody has heard about this lady in a park in America who was asked by a black man to put her dog on a leash, which is the law,” Holding said.

“She threatened this black man with her whiteness, saying that she was going to call the police and tell them there was a black man threatening her.

“If the society in which she was living did not empower her or get her to think that she had that power of being white and being able to call the police on a black man, she would not have done it.

“It was an automatic reaction because of the society in which she lives. If you don’t educate people they will keep growing up in that sort of society and you will not get meaningful change.”

with agencies