The England cricket team took to the return of Test matches — with the 1st Test vs New Zealand at Lord’s beginning on Wednesday — with a special message against all forms of discrimination.
A moment of unity was held before play on Day 1, with the England players sporting messages against any racism, religious intolerance, sexism, homophobia, transphobia, ableism and ageism in cricket.
We return to international cricket with a powerful message.
Cricket is a game for ᴇᴠᴇʀʏᴏɴᴇ pic.twitter.com/lDkTS215jy
— England Cricket (@englandcricket) June 2, 2021
It had been reported last week that the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) had also given the England players permission to take a knee before the Test. “Like all of us, they feel very strongly about all discrimination,” Ashley Giles, director of cricket, ECB, had told Daily Mail.
FOLLOW LIVE | England vs New Zealand 1st Test, Day 1
Former West Indies cricketer Michael Holding had criticised England last year for not taking a knee in two series against Pakistan and Australia after having started the practice in a previous series involving West Indies. “Now that the West Indies team has gone home, that doesn’t mean that you still shouldn’t be respecting the message and exactly what it stands for,” he had said on his YouTube channel.
Batting first after winning the toss, New Zealand openers Devon Conway and Tom Latham took the visitors to the first drinks break without fall of wickets.