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The West Indies coach praises both players’ statement about taking a knee for the first test

“We were able to make a statement”: West Indies coach Roddy Estwick thanks England for participating in taking a knee in solidarity with Black Lives Matter movement … while thanking Michael Holding for ” strong and impressive ‘speech

  • England and the West Indies reached 17.4 overs on a wet first day of the Test series
  • Both sets of players took a knee before the action started and each member of the West Indian squad wore a black glove and raised an arm while taking a knee
  • There were a number of reports as part of the Black Lives Matter movement

Cricket’s eagerly awaited return has been at the center of powerful reports from past and present West Indian players when the Black Lives Matter movement came to the Ageas Bowl.

Both sets of players took a knee before the rain-delayed start of the first test, while the West Indians all wore a black glove and raised an arm – just as American sprinters Tommie Smith and John Carlos famously did onstage at the 1968 Olympics Playing in Mexico City.

Only 17.4 overs were possible on the first day of the series with three games, with England losing Dom Sibley to a duck thrown by Shannon Gabriel before recovering via Rory Burns and Joe Denly to reach 35 for one.

Cricket stars followed football and F1 to make the gesture to support Black Lives Matter

Players from England and the West Indies took a knee on Wednesday before the start of their first test

But the game played second fiddle to a devastating critique of West Indian speed bowling legend Michael Holding’s attitude to racism, who suggested on Sky Sports that many people were ‘brainwashed’ by society, saying the world hasn’t had to do with the ‘dehumanization of the black race’.

He added, “History is written by the victor, not by those who are overcome.

“History is written by those who cause harm, not those who have suffered harm. We must go back and teach both sides of history. ‘

Both teams had agreed to show their support for the game behind closed doors

Both teams had agreed to show their support for the game behind closed doors

Both teams had agreed to show their support for the game behind closed doors

Concerning the murder of George Floyd by a Minnesota police officer in May, Holding said, “People could see life slowly drain from the man, and see the look on the face of the police officer and the other officers, as if she didn’t care whether this man dies. He’s just another black man we killed.

“If you don’t train people, they will continue to grow up in that kind of society and you won’t get any meaningful change.

“Don’t yell at us that all lives matter. The evidence is clear that white lives matter. We want black lives to matter now. It’s that simple.’

When asked about the pre-game gesture, which was considered a ‘Black Power’ salute in some circles in 1968, West Indies assistant coach Roddy Estwick said, ‘We wanted to make a statement and do it differently than all others. It was our way of showing our support for the Black Lives Matter campaign.

West Indian cricket legend Michael Holding spoke vigorously about racism and how to educate society to finally stop inequality during Wednesday's coverage

West Indian cricket legend Michael Holding spoke vigorously about racism and how to educate society to finally stop inequality during Wednesday's coverage

West Indian cricket legend Michael Holding spoke vigorously about racism and how to educate society to finally stop inequality during Wednesday’s coverage

“It was a good feeling for me. We need to make changes. If the gesture has made us aware of what is happening around the world, we are happy. We were able to make a statement and it was great to see that England also supported us. ‘

Estwick also admitted that Holding’s words had impressed the West Indian dressing room: “It was good to see an icon of West Indian cricket come out and speak in such a strong and impressive way.”

Meanwhile, his English counterpart Graham Thorpe said it was “important to show solidarity with the West Indies. The bottom line is that we feel that there is no place in racism for sport. That is the beginning of the English team and we are proud that we did it. ‘

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