Adelaide coach Matthew Nicks EXPLAINS vile trolls who racially abused Izar Rankine as ‘not real persons’… after Crow’s young gun revealed the disgusting insults he received just weeks after targeting fellow Native star Jamarra Ugle-Hagan
Coach Matthew Nicks has blasted an online troll who made a disgusting racial insult to young Adelaide striker Izak Rankine, saying the culprit behind it is ‘not a real person’.
Adelaide and the AFL have strongly condemned the racism after 22-year-old Rankine posted a screenshot of the message to his Instagram account showing he received the abuse during his side’s win against Fremantle.
“Pretty disappointing to STILL be dealing with this. When will it end,” Rankine wrote on his Instagram.
He had a superb touch in the Crows’ 39-point victory against Fremantle on Saturday, scoring three goals.
Nicks praised Rankine’s decision to denounce the abuse, adding that his welfare was the club’s main concern.
Crows coach Matthew Nicks has blasted an online troll who sent disgusting racist abuse to young Adelaide striker Izak Rankine
Rankine was racially abused over the weekend after the Crows’ game against Fremantle
‘It’s not a person. This is someone who is under active attack (Rankine), the intention here is to hurt someone, to have an account where it can’t be traced,” he told Fox Footy.
“It’s not a real person in my opinion, and it’s disgraceful, but we’ll do what we can from here to support Isaac.
“He’s a great human being, and we’ll put all the support around him that we can and he can’t wait to play on Thursday night.”
The AFL’s Integrity Department has been contacted and will investigate the incident in hopes of identifying the person involved.
The incident comes just weeks after Western Bulldogs young Jamarra Ugle-Hagan was racially abused both by a spectator and online after the match when his side played St Kilda.
Adelaide CEO Tim Silvers labeled the ‘deliberate’ attack on Rankine as ‘totally unacceptable and disgraceful’ and said the club would support the player and his family.
“We all have a responsibility to expose this kind of reprehensible behavior,” he said.
“Similarly, we also need to take the time to understand the pain it causes to the person being targeted, as well as, in this case, all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.”
The AFL echoed the Crows’ sentiments, stating “there’s no place in our game for anyone who slanders our players”.
“We stand with the club in making racist remarks, comments that significantly hurt and harm Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples,” the AFL’s statement read.
“The AFL continues its continued implementation of the ‘Peek Rule’ and its work never stops against defamation, especially in the online space and the challenges surrounding antagonist identification.”
Rankine shared the offensive message he received on Instagram on Monday
Jamarra Ugle-Hagan was allegedly abused by a St Kilda fan last month
Rankine was traded from the Gold Coast to his home state of South Australia in the off-season and has made a flying start with the Crows, scoring 11 goals in four games.
“There’s no question that being home has pushed him to just relax and focus on footy and enjoy his footy,” said Nicks.
“He has family here, he was able to buy a house and settle off the field.
“What he’s been able to do on the pitch has been a huge bonus for us, but off the pitch is the part we love.”