Lloyd retires from commentary in backdrop of racism claims

Cricket commentator David Lloyd announced his retirement from Sky Sports on Tuesday, a month after he was named by Azeem Rafiq in his testimony about a culture of widespread racism at his county club Yorkshire.

Lloyd, a former England player and coach, has been behind the microphone with Sky Cricket for 22 years.

He apologised last month when Rafiq said the 74-year-old was a “closet racist” after he made disparaging comments about Asian cricketers in 2020. Sky had said they would be investigating Lloyd’s comments.

In a statement on social media, Lloyd wrote: “After 22 wonderful years with Sky Cricket, I’ve decided the time is now right to pass on the microphone.

“It’s been an immense privilege to try and bring the sport I love into people’s homes up and down the country.

“There are so many wonderful memories, so many terrific games and incredible performances. I’ve been lucky to travel the world sharing Ashes highs and lows, World Cup wins and losses, heroics and heartaches with you all.”

He said sharing a commentary box in Australia in 2013 with his broadcasting hero Bill Lawry was a “real highlight”.

Known for bringing an element of humour to his commentary besides his vast knowledge about the game, Lloyd was alongside Ian Bishop, when Carlos Brathwaite’s four sixes in a row off Ben Stokes took West Indies to a stunning last-over victory against England in the 2016 T20 World Cup final.

“It has been a great pleasure to work alongside Ian Bishop, Ravi Shastri, Shane Warne, Shaun Pollock, and Ian Smith amongst many others,” he added.

“With the passing of Bob Willis and after the decision to move on by my good friends David Gower, Ian Botham and more recently Michael Holding, the commentary box feels a little emptier.  And so I feel it is time for me to do the same and move on to the next chapter.

“I leave the Sky box in immensely capable hands led by my pals Michael Atherton, Nasser Hussain, Ian Ward and Rob Key. To those that follow, cherish that mic. Inform and entertain so the next generation can fall in love with this wonderful game,” Lloyd said in a statement.

“I’m done now with Sweet Caroline but in the words of Elton John, ‘I’m still standing’!”

Lloyd played nine Tests and eight One-Day Internationals for England between 1973 and 1980, and he coached the team from 1996 to 1999.

 

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