Why was Ollie Robinson sacked by Yorkshire? Cricketer’s fall out with club explained as racist tweets surface

The Sussex cricketer has been suspended indefinitely by the England and Wales Cricket Board pending the outcome of a disciplinary investigation
Ollie Robinson has been suspended indefinitely by England (Getty Images)Ollie Robinson has been suspended indefinitely by England (Getty Images)
Ollie Robinson has been suspended indefinitely by England (Getty Images)

Ollie Robinson was indefinitely suspended from international cricket pending the outcome of a disciplinary investigation.

Robinson, now 27, issued an apology for a series of racist and sexist tweets he posted in 2012 and 2013, when he was in his late teens, that were unearthed and shared online on the day he made his Test bow versus New Zealand at Lord’s.

The seamer was sacked by Yorkshire in 2014 when aged 20 and has since carved out as successful career at Sussex.

But why was Robinson dismissed by Yorkshire in 2014?

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Why was Ollie Robinson sacked by Yorkshire?

Robinson was sacked in 2014 after a succession of incidents that led to the club’s coaching and support staff losing faith in him.

Director of cricket Martyn Moxon declined to give details of those incidents, which the club described only as “a number of unprofessional actions” in a short statement.

The Yorkshire Post found in 2014 that the incidents relate to areas such as timekeeping and trust, with the club eventually losing patience with the promising all-rounder.

Moxon at the time said: “There’s been three serious acts of misconduct, I would say, and then a string of less major incidents which in themselves wouldn’t be too serious.

“But when they are all added together cumulatively, it just got to a point where myself and the support staff have had enough really.

“It’s such a shame, and I’m sad that we’re losing potentially a very good cricketer because on the field he’s put in some really good performances.

“It’s disappointing from our point of view that we’ve not been able to mould him into what we feel you need to be to be a professional cricketer.”

Speaking to the BBC in May Robinson described his desire to visit friends and family as a reason for his behaviour.

He said: “we played a seconds game in Liverpool. Straight away I got into the car to go to Kent, a five- or six-hour drive.

"I stayed there for a night, saw my mates the next day, then left Kent at 1am to get to training at 9am.

"It was an unsustainable lifestyle that I was trying to live.

"At first they just thought I was a really bad timekeeper, but as it went on they realised what I was doing."

He added: "The relief I had when I realised I could go home was immense.

"It's not something most people say when you get sacked, but I could go home and didn't have to worry about the stresses of trying to live that way."

Why has Robinson been suspended by England?

Robinson issued an apology last week after historical tweets he sent which used racist and sexist language surfaced on the day he made his Test debut.

He said he was “embarrassed” and “ashamed” of the posts he made in 2012 and 2013, when he was in his late teens.

In one tweet, Robinson wrote: “Not going to lie, a lot of girls need to learn the art of class,” while another said: “My new Muslim friend is the bomb #wheeyyyyy”.

In a pre-prepared statement, Robinson apologised for the tweets, as he said: “On the biggest day of my career so far, I am embarrassed by the racist and sexist tweets that I posted over eight years ago, which have today become public.

“I want to make it clear that I’m not racist and I’m not sexist. I deeply regret my actions, and I am ashamed of making such remarks. I was thoughtless and irresponsible. I am sorry, and I have certainly learned my lesson.”

Robinson added at a press conference: “It was a pretty low point in my life (at the time) and I regret that massively. I didn’t know they (the tweets) were still there and I just want to apologise to everyone. I regret it hugely.

“I was thoughtless and irresponsible, and regardless of my state of mind at the time, my actions were inexcusable. Since that period, I have matured as a person and fully regret the tweets.

“I don’t want something that happened eight years ago to diminish the efforts of my team-mates and the ECB as they continue to build meaningful action with their comprehensive initiatives and efforts, which I fully endorse.

“I will continue to educate myself, look for advice and work with the support network that is available to me to learn more about getting better in this area.”