Warwickshire Cricket officials have decided to deploy undercover spotters into the crowd at Edgbaston in Birmingham during the second T20 International match between England and India on Saturday (July 9). It is a step taken with the intention to curb racial abuse against the fans.
Warwickshire, the English county whose headquarters are at the Edgbaston, Birmingham, has come up with several measures to tackle racism at the venue after a section of fans reported incidents related to racial abuse during the rescheduled fifth Test earlier this week.
Undercover football crowd-style spotters will be placed throughout the Edgbaston stadium: Warwickshire
Local police have already started an investigation into allegations over the racist remarks made on the penultimate day (July 4) of the fifth Test. The Bharat Army, India’s official club of supporters, said many of its members at the venue were subjected to racist abuse from a very small minority of individuals.
“Undercover football crowd-style spotters will be placed throughout the stadium to listen out for abusive behaviour and report it for immediate action,” Warwickshire issued a statement on Thursday (July 7).
We need to work harder to ensure everyone feels safe to watch the match: Stuart Cairn
Warwickshire’s chief executive Stuart Cairn condemned the racial remarks against Indian supporters and promised to work harder to ensure a safe environment for the fans and players inside the stadium.
“Nearly 100,000 people watched one of the most exciting Test matches in recent history earlier this week. But we cannot hide from the mindless racist abuse experienced by some fans following India in the Eric Hollies Stand,” Cairn said, as reported by news agency AFP.
“These unacceptable actions by a small number of people have overshadowed a superb sporting contest, and those responsible do not deserve to be part of the cricket family.
“We need to work harder as people, as well as a venue, to take responsibility for ensuring that everyone feels safe and welcome when watching the game,” he added.
Meanwhile, India won the first T20I against England by 50 runs as all-rounder Hardik Pandya starred for the tourists with the bat and ball to help them take a 1-0 lead in Southampton on July 7.