JOFRA ARCHER has rejected claims by Michael Holding that England have ignored the Black Lives Matter campaign in recent weeks.
Fast bowler Archer insisted the message remains as pertinent as ever in the England dressing-room – and said Holding should get his facts right.
Archer said: “I’m pretty sure Michael Holding doesn’t know anything that is going on behind the scenes. I don’t think he has spoken to Tom Harrison (ECB chief executive).
“I’ve spoken to Tom and we have stuff running in the background. No-one here has forgotten about Black Lives Matter. I think it’s a bit harsh for Mikey not to do some research before criticising.”
England’s players took the knee during the Test series against West Indies and three one-dayers against Ireland. But no players from either side have taken the knee in matches against Pakistan and Australia.
Legendary ex-speedster and Sky commentator Holding said: “The ECB came out with a pretty lame statement. I didn’t hear anything from Pakistan – neither the players nor the board. Now I see another lame statement from the Australia captain.”
I think it’s a bit harsh for Mikey not to do some research before criticising
Archer has been a regular target for racist social media abuse and a spectator in New Zealand last winter was banned from matches for two years after insulting Archer.
He revealed: “There’s still a small percentage. I may be doing well but I saw one lady comment on my chains. Chains have nothing to do with cricket. If she knew me, she’d know I’ve worn chains since I was 14 or 15.
“You can’t make everyone happy but the majority of people in England are happy and that makes me happy.”
“People can be prosecuted a bit easier but it might have to go further because some people still aren’t worried about what can happen to them.
“I had one the other day – the guy blamed me for being drunk.
“As long as there’s social media and the person doesn’t have to confront you, it will go on.
“I think I’m strong enough to deal with it but what happens when they start targeting someone who isn’t as mentally strong and it starts affecting them?”