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Home > Cricket > The Cup > Reuters > Report

Kiwis deny making racist comments

April 03, 2007 11:18 IST

New Zealand team manager Lindsay Crocker denied on Monday a front-page in the Antigua Sun accusing unnamed players of making racist comments to catering staff at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium.

The report said the players had said "Good morning niggers" to employees of a catering company before last Thursday's World Cup Super Eights match against West Indies.

Crocker told the New Zealand Press Association he had investigated the allegation with the International Cricket Council's operations director Michael Hall.

He added staff members who had been interviewed said they thought they had heard the word "nigger" used during a conversation between some members of the team.

"We became aware of a rumour circulating among the catering that there was a racially based comment made in the players' lounge as everyone was assembling," Crocker said.

"We talked to the catering staff and we quickly found there were three or four people in the room at the time. They weren't able to tell me who they were.

"They weren't sure if they heard it accurately, they didn't hear any other comments and the comments weren't directed at the catering staff.

"It became clear to Michael and myself there was no great substance to this. There was no complaint or allegation from staff whatsoever."

The New Zealand team includes Jeetan Patel, who is of Indian origin and part-Samoan Ross Taylor. Maori pace bowler Daryl Tuffey has returned home after injury.

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