West Indies Cricketers will be wearing a ‘black lives matter’ emblem on the collar of their shirts during the Test Series against England. The gesture will be done to show solidarity and raise awareness regarding equality.
West Indies captain Jason Holder, who has voiced his support to the cause that has once again come to the forefront after the killing of American citizen George Floyd, said in a statement to ESPNCricinfo on Sunday, “We believe we have a duty to show solidarity and also to help raise awareness. This is a pivotal moment in history for sports, for the game of cricket and for the West Indies cricket team. We have come to England to retain the Wisden Trophy but we are very conscious of happenings around the world and the fight for justice and equality. As a group of young men, we know of the rich and diverse history of West Indies cricket and we know we are guardians of the great game for generation to come.”
Holder, who wants racism to be treated at par with doping and corruption, said they arrived at the decision to wear the logo after much thought. He said, “We did not take our decision lightly. We know what it is for people to make judgments because of the colour of our skin, so we know what it feels like, this goes beyond the boundary. There must be equality and there must be unity. Until we get that as people, we cannot stop. We have to find some way to have equal rights and people must not be viewed differently because of the colour of their skin or ethnic background.”
The West Indies players are likely to wear the shirts for the first time in this week’s four-day warm-up match at Emirates Old Trafford, starting on Monday.
The opening Test of the series, which will mark the resumption of international cricket after the COVID-19 forced hiatus, will get underway at the Ageas Bowl in Southampton on July 8.