Gabriel clears the air on ‘homophobic’ remark following ICC ban

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Fast bowler Shannon Gabriel has issued a clear-the-air statement revealing his controversial comments to England captain Joe Root, which earned him a stiff four-match one-day ban from cricket’s world governing body, the ICC.

The 30-year-old was charged for player abuse following a verbal spat with Root, during England’s second innings on Monday’s third day of the final Test in St Lucia which ended on Wednesday with a 232-run victory for the visitors.

Stump microphones had not picked up Gabriel’s comments but according to media reports, Root was overheard telling Gabriel in response: “Don’t use it as an insult. There’s nothing wrong with being gay.”

An outcry from international media then followed, alleging Gabriel had made “homophobic remarks”.

Gabriel said he it owed to his friends, well-wishers and Caribbean fans “to provide an accurate record of what transpired”.

“The exchange occurred during a tense moment on the field. The pressure was on and England captain Joe Root was looking at me intensely as I prepared to bowl, which may have been the usual psychological strategy with which all Test cricketers are familiar,” Gabriel said in the statement.

“I recognise now that I was attempting to break through my own tension when I said to Jose Root: ‘why are you smiling at me? Do you like boys?’”

“His response which was picked up by the microphone was: ‘Don’t use it as an insult. There’s nothing wrong with being gay.’ I then responded: ‘I have no issues with that but you should stop smiling at me.’”

The matter was further thrust into the spotlight following the day’s play in an interview Root gave to international media.

“The ICC have got to handle things and I am not in a position to comment but throughout the series it has been played in the right manner between the two sides,” Root was quoted as saying.

“West Indies have played some fantastic cricket, they are a good bunch of guys and it would be a shame if it tarnishes it. It has been a good hard-fought series. As a player you feel you have responsibilities to uphold on the field and I stand by what I did.”

Gabriel said he had since resolved the issue with Root but was surprised it had “escalated to the point that it has”.

“I think it is fair to say neither of us expected the issue to escalate to the point that it has,” Gabriel explained.

“Nonetheless, I embrace this as a learning experience and as an opportunity for myself and all athletes to recognise the need for sensitivity and respect in their interactions with all.”

The ICC also slapped Gabriel with a 75 per cent fine and and three demerit points for the incident.

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9 COMMENTS

  1. So the Englishman looks at Gabriel adoringly, and makes his amorous intentions known, and that is not considered as sexual harassment. Gabriel never invited the advances, yet when he declines same, he is deemed to contravene the laws of cricket, and of being a homophobe.

    See how those white people trying to foist their warped values on us, and trying their best to normalise abhorrent behaviours? It’s time for West Indies Cricket and the WIPA to stand up in defence of what is morally right. If Gabriel is penalised, then the Englishman who initiated this sordid mess should be equally, or for that matter, more harshly dealt with.

  2. WEST INDIES beat England. They will now try to undermine the Windies winnings. Sounds like the ICC itself needs to be fined. I bet the President is some melanin-deficient gangsta in a black jacket.

    Go WINDIES!!! They can’t stop us.
    Go WINDIES!!! They can’t stop us.
    Go WINDIES!!! They can’t stop us.

  3. Dem homosexuals want some of us who nah accept dem behavior fuh get punish? Dem hab rights fu behave how dem want but we nah hab none rights fuh nah accept dem behavior? You can’t fource harse fuh drink warta. We nah HATE unu most of us LOVE unu but we nah accept unu behavior.

  4. Sometimes things just get blown out of context, but it’s always interesting to hear the response of those with imaginary white robes.

  5. The Engliahman Root knew what he was doing. He made an effort to say what he said in the stump mic. Now, eue to the political climate the ICC has overreacted. This is outrageous!!! Unfortunately, everybody is too afraid to say anything and the ICC is afraid of backlash. The mesia has also blown thia out of proportion. Lets beat England in one day international too!! Dem Englishman too renk and forward with dem dutty devices.

  6. I hope I didn’t miss it, but I am get awaiting a response from the West Indies Cricket Board. The people in the white sheets and queer hats, will never let West Indies forgot how they whap dem behind. Makes me remember what the French did to Haiti after their independence. We as a people better be prepared for what will come next.

  7. BBC IS REFERRING TO THIS INCIDENT AS A CONSOLATION WIN.
    Now, they lost the series, their reporter did not mention that WI won the series but she emphasized the moral victory for the English team.
    No one heard what Gabriel said and he was so far away at the other end.
    The Caucasian man deliberately said what he said knowing the Mike would pick up his comments. IT WAS A SET UP AND WI PLAYER FELL FOR IT.
    The Caucasian man’s comment was offensive to a STRAIGHT MAN but the POWER AND MIGHT of the English media was overwhelming.
    WI players need to play cricket from the shoulders up and START TI USE THE STUMP MIKE TO THEIR ADVANTAGE. SAY NICE THINGS TO THE STUMP MIKE THEN GO MID PITCH AND WHISPER THE CARIBBEAN LANGUAGE TO WHOSOEVER.

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