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Home > Cricket > Reuters > Report

Dean Jones sacked after 'terrorist' comment

Telford Vice | August 07, 2006 23:16 IST

Former Australia Test player Dean Jones was sacked from his job as a commentator on Monday after referring to South African Muslim batsman Hashim Amla as a "terrorist".

Jones, who admitted making the comment and apologised, was on a TV commentary team covering the second Test between Sri Lanka and South Africa in Colombo.

According to a statement issued by Cricket South Africa on Monday, viewers heard Jones say, "the terrorist has got another wicket" when Amla took the catch that dismissed Kumar Sangakkara.

Amla is a devout Muslim who wears a beard for religious reasons and has successfully negotiated with the South African team's main sponsors, SA Breweries, not to wear the Castle Lager logo on his playing and practice gear.

"We take the strongest exception to this comment, and we will lodge an official complaint with the host broadcaster, Ten Sports, that employs him," CSA chief executive Gerald Majola was quoted as saying.

"We will be asking for his immediate suspension and a full apology."

The match is being broadcast live in South Africa, which has a significant Muslim community.


"The switchboards of both CSA and SuperSport, that takes a feed of the broadcast to South African audiences, have been jammed with calls from some very angry people," Majola was quoted as saying.

"I'm gone, I'm on the 1 a.m. flight," Jones told reporters in Colombo where he issued a statement apologising for his comment.

"It was a silly and completely insensitive thing to say and, obviously, it was never supposed to be heard over the air," Jones said.

"I am truly sorry to have caused offence to anybody and the last thing I intended was to be disrespectful.

"Everyone needs to get away from perpetuating the myth, publicly and privately, that beards associated with the Muslim faith are somehow suspicious, and I intend to do exactly that.

"The irony is that I am great friends with most of the Pakistan team and they are all Muslims.

"I have no end of respect for the Muslim faith - that's why I'm so sorry at making such a stupid comment.

"It does not represent who I am, how I think or what I believe.

"I will be the first person to apologise to Hashim as soon as I get the chance, and I will assure him that prejudice against anybody, on any basis, is unacceptable and not something I will ever condone."

The CSA statement said the incident would be reported to the International Cricket Council (ICC).

"The ICC has strongly condemned racism and we will be discussing the matter with them," Majola was quoted as saying.

Jones, 45, played 52 Tests for Australia between 1984 and 1992 with a batting average of 46.55.

In April 2004, former Manchester United soccer manager Ron Atkinson resigned from his analyst's job with ITV after a racist comment he made about Chelsea's black French international defender Marcel Desailly was inadvertently broadcast.

© Copyright 2006 Reuters Limited. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of Reuters content, including by framing or similar means, is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Reuters. Reuters shall not be liable for any errors or delays in the content, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon.

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Number of User Comments: 18

Sub: Dean Jones Sacked

I think there have been many similar comments passed on by Imran Khan on Indian team back in 1996 world cup match against India. No ...

Posted by Mayank

Sub: Worst thing

How dare this australian can talk like that? its good to hear that TENSPORTS has removed his from the job. this kind of persons shud ...

Posted by S.K.Azharuddin

Sub: What was done is right!!

When you are talking continuously, what was there in your mind can come out in any spontaneous moment. That\'s what has happened. Saying things afterwards ...

Posted by bupesh

Sub: Disrespectful comments against South African cricketer

People like Dean Jones who hails from Australia should not make such comments and if he does he is not doing any good, neither to ...

Posted by ak

Sub: Nice Obsservation

Atleast such open observations, will deter the muslims community from allowing their kin to bomb. It really looks awful to see a man boarding that ...

Posted by Ranganath Varma



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