Michael Vaughan: Former England captain steps back from his commentary at BBC | News UK Video News

The former England captain Michael Vaughan has decided to step down from his work at the BBC amid the ‘ongoing dialogue’ around the Yorkshire racism investigation.

Vaughan posted a statement on his Twitter account explaining why he felt it best to temporarily remove himself from the BBC role.

Vaughan said: “On numerous occasions, I have put on record my views on the issues concerning YCCC.

“It is always regrettable when commentary on matters off the field takes the focus away from what’s happening on the field.

“In view of the ongoing dialogue on the subject, I have taken the decision to step back from my work with the BBC for the time being.

“The key driver for this is my concern for the wellbeing of my family members and my wish to protect their family life.

“Stepping back temporarily is also in the interests of the game and I hope that it will minimize any difficulties for my work colleagues.”

Vaughan was not involved in the BBC Ashes coverage in November last year after allegations of racism from Azeem Rafiq, who claimed the former England skipper told a group of Muslim players in 2009 there were “too many of you lot, we need to do something about it”.

Azeem Rafiq
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Azeem Rafiq said he had been the victim of racism at Yorkshire

Earlier this month, Yorkshire and “a number of individuals” were charged by the England and Wales Cricket Board following an investigation into allegations of historic racism.

Vaughan has not been named among those charged and denies all allegations.

Read More: Michael Vaughan: Former England cricket captain denies ‘you lot’ racism remark and calls Azeem Rafiq claims ‘extremely upsetting’

The 47-year-old returned to the BBC’s Test Match Special coverage for England’s three-Test series against New Zealand.

The BBC acknowledged staff had “raised concerns” after an in-house diversity group reportedly criticized the former Yorkshire batter resuming commentary duties.

Following Vaughan’s announcement, the BBC said in a statement: “Following conversations with Michael Vaughan we have accepted his decision to step away from our cricket coverage.

“This is a decision we respect and understand. Michael remains under contract to the BBC.”

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