Cricket Australia is investigating after visiting players claim they have been racially abused by fans.

Cricket Australia apologized to the Indian team on Sunday and opened an investigation into allegations that players were racially abused by fans in the crowd during the third test at the Sydney Cricket Ground.

The Indian team filed an official complaint Saturday after the game after bowlers Jasprit Bumrah and Mohammed Siraj complained about hearing racial slurs when they pitched near the border rope.

On Sunday, Siraj approached the referee and pointed to the stands. The action was interrupted when the police threw a small group of fans off the ground.

Cricket Australia opened a parallel investigation with New South Wales Police, promising to take “strongest measures” against anyone found guilty.

“It is extremely unfortunate that an otherwise excellent test match played by two friendly rivals in a tremendous mood has been marred over the past two days by the actions of a small number of spectators,” said Sean Carroll, Director of Integrity and Security. in a statement.

“As hosts, we once again apologize to the Indian team.”

Police removed a group of spectators from their seats after Mohammed Siraj of India complained to arbitrators about racist abuse on Sunday [Dean Lewins/AAP via Reuters]

“Absolutely unacceptable”

Venues New South Wales, which operates the stadium, said surveillance cameras were checked to aid the investigation and that fans deemed racially abused would be banned from the Sydney Cricket Ground and other major stadiums in Sydney.

India regular captain Virat Kohli was fined half his game fee in 2012 for responding to abuse by the crowd at the Sydney Cricket Ground by pointing at them with his middle finger.

Kohli, who returned home to have his first child after the first test, said racial abuse was completely unacceptable.

“After going through many incidents of really pathetic things being said on the borderlines, this is the absolute height of the noisy behavior,” Kohli said on Twitter.

“It’s sad to see this happening on the field. The incident must be viewed with the utmost urgency and seriousness, and tough measures against the perpetrators should fix things once and for all. “

‘Very sad’

Australia coach Justin Langer joined the conviction.

“It’s annoying and disappointing,” he said. “It’s one of my biggest pet hates in life that people think they can come to a sporting event and abuse or say whatever they want. I hated it as a player and I hate it as a coach. It’s really sad to see it happen in Australia. “

Indian Ravichandran Ashwin said the team had been insulted by viewers from Sydney in the past, but racial abuse crossed a line during the ongoing game, which is played in front of less than 10,000 spectators.

“It’s definitely not acceptable these days. This definitely needs to be handled with an iron fist and we need to make sure it doesn’t happen again, ”said the bowler.

The International Cricket Council’s anti-discrimination policy requires Cricket Australia to investigate the incident and submit a report to the global board of directors within two weeks.

A man was banned from playing cricket games in New Zealand for two years after being found guilty of molesting English fast bowler Jofra Archer while on tour in 2019.

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