Moeen Ali hopes Ollie Robinson ban will be force for good in cricket

‘We NEED change’: Moeen Ali hopes Ollie Robinson’s eight-match ban for historic tweets will end up being a force for good in English cricket

  • England and Sussex bowler Robinson was given an eight-match suspension 
  • He was punished for sexist and racist tweets posted on Twitter in 2012-2013 
  • However, five games of the ban and three games have already been served
  • Therefore, Robinson, who has apologised, is available to play again immediately  

Moeen Ali has warned future generations of English cricketers that ‘things need to change’ after Ollie Robinson received an eight-match ban for the racist and sexist tweets that came to light during the Lord’s Test last month.

But with five of those matches suspended for two years, and the independent Cricket Discipline Commission ruling that Robinson has already missed three — the second Test against New Zealand, plus two T20 games for Sussex — he is now free to resume playing.

Robinson was fined £3,200 for the offensive tweets, which were posted between 2012 and 2014, and on Saturday reiterated his embarrassment and shame. 

Moeen Ali (pictured) stated his hope that Ollie Robinson’s ban ends up being a force for good

He added: ‘I am deeply sorry for the hurt I caused. This has been the most difficult time in my professional career for both my family and myself.’

Moeen said he would welcome Robinson back into the England dressing room, while admitting he had been surprised by the tweets, one of which made a comment about Muslims and bombs.

‘I thought the ECB did the right thing in putting him out of the Test series, so he’s done his time in terms of the ban,’ said Moeen. ‘Everyone makes mistakes. You move on, you forget and forgive. He’s a really good guy.

‘Regardless of the length of the punishment, the fact that there was punishment was a good sign. You can’t get away with these things. Things need to change, and people need to change. 

‘Even as a young player coming through the county circuit, you’ve got to be careful what you tweet. There are loads of things that will come out of this, and hopefully they’re good for the future.’

Robinson (above) is free to resume playing cricket following ECB’s probe into offensive tweets

The England star’s test debut was marred after historic racist and sexist tweets came to light

Asked about his reaction on seeing the tweets, Moeen said: ‘It was a long time ago, which doesn’t make that much difference in my opinion. It was a surprise, but there’s not much I can say to that.’

Meanwhile, he tried to put a brave face on the limited part he continues to play in England’s white-ball teams ahead of today’s third and final ODI against Sri Lanka at Bristol, with Eoin Morgan’s side eyeing a whitewash.

After neither batting nor bowling in Thursday’s series-clinching eight-wicket win at The Oval, Moeen has sent down just 17 balls during his three white-ball matches this summer against Sri Lanka, and batted only twice. 

‘Obviously I’m disappointed and I want to play, but we’re winning,’ he said. ‘In the past I would let it affect me. But I’ve come to realise it’s not me and not to blame myself for not getting the chances.’

England have named an unchanged 16-man squad for the three-match ODI series against Pakistan, starting in Cardiff on Thursday.  

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