Big Bash cricketer Dan Christian has shared examples of ignorant and racist comments sent to him on social media after he hit back at Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s criticism of Cricket Australia.
The PM had taken a shot at Cricket Australia after the governing body gave BBL clubs the optional recommendation not to promote matches on January 26 as Australia Day games, out of respect for Indigenous Australians who view the date as the beginning of colonialism and a day of mourning.
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After Mr Morrison suggested Cricket Australia ‘focus a lot more on cricket and less on politics’, Christian took to Twitter to suggest the PM ‘take note’ of the sport’s efforts to lead in the area.
“Read the room Mr Prime Minister. @CricketAus are leading the way because your government won’t," Christian tweeted last week.
"There’ll be millions of kids watching our @BBL games on the 26th January, and they’ll see us taking a knee against racism, and promoting inclusion for all. Take note.”
Days later on January 26, Christian shared some of the responses he had received to his stance, which referred to him as ‘Mr HalfCast’.
One of the messages told Christian to sell his cricket gear ‘for a boomerang and hunt some kangaroos’.
Christian sarcastically suggested both commenters were ‘nice’.
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Morrison was widely criticised for his comments at a time when bushfires were ravaging the country, saying Australia’s cricketers would give bushfire victims “something to cheer for”.
“I like the part where Scotty is allowed to focus on cricket (during a horrific bushfire season) but Cricket Australia isn’t allowed to focus on politics,” Jeffrey wrote on Thursday.
ABC Grandstand’s Damien Peck also called out the PM, tweeting: “OK, but can we now ban all politicians from sport?”, while Aussie cricket star Megan Schutt wrote: “Maybe you should focus more on politics and less on cricket.”
Former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd went as far as to call Mr Morrison “gutless”.
CA has since confirmed they will not budge, acknowledging some blowback is inevitable but the message of support was more important.
“Not at all (will it change),” CA director and NATSICOC co-chair Mel Jones told AAP.
“Everyone is going to have an opinion on this as they do for a variety of different things.
“The recommendations put forward we know is a value-driven thing about making cricket as inclusive as we can.
“This isn’t a tokenistic let’s grab a headline.
“This is just our day-to-day workings. There are so many things we have put into place for a number of years now.”
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