'That's racist!': Fans blast Shane Warne for calling Cheteshwar Pujara as 'Steve'

WION Web Team
New Delhi, India Published: Dec 17, 2020, 02:53 PM(IST)

'That's racist!': Fans blast Shane Warne for calling Cheteshwar Pujara as 'Steve' Photograph:( AFP )

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Legendary Australian cricketer Shane Warne on Thursday found himself in a bit of controversy while doing his commentary duties for Fox Cricket on Day 1 of the Adelaide Test between India and Australia. Warne, who was in the commentary box, referred Pujara as ‘Steve’ and the name has left many fans in anger. 

Legendary Australian cricketer Shane Warne on Thursday found himself in a bit of controversy while doing his commentary duties for Fox Cricket on Day 1 of the Adelaide Test between India and Australia. Warne, who was in the commentary box, referred Pujara as ‘Steve’ and the name has left many fans in anger. 

Pujara was given the nickname ‘Steve’ during his County stint with Yorkshire. The Indian batsman had once revealed that his Yorkshire teammates found it tough to pronounce his name ‘Cheteshwar’ and gave him the name ‘Steve’. However, it was recently reported that the nickname ‘Steve’ had a racist angle.

In December, County club Yorkshire launched a thorough investigation into alleged racism after cricketer Azeem Rafiq lodged a case against the club alleging racism. A Yorkshire employee named Taj Butt had even alleged that the name ‘Steve’ was used as a reference to “every player of colour”. Butt had left his job at Yorkshire club as the community development officer just six weeks after joining them. 

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"There were continuous references to taxi drivers and restaurant workers when referring to Asian community," Butt had told ESPNCricinfo.

"They called every person of colour 'Steve'. Even Cheteshwar Pujara, who joined as an overseas professional, was called Steve because they could not pronounce his name."

Warne had referred Pujara as Steve and had a laugh with his colleagues but the move left fans unimpressed by the spin great.

Here's how fans reacted to Shane Warne referring Cheteshwar Pujara as 'Steve':

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Reportedly, former West Indies cricketer Tino Best and Pakistan pacer Rana Naveed-ul-Haq had also verified Rafiq’s claims of racism after having played for the English club. 

However, fans are now asking the legendary spinner Warne to apologise after referring Pujara as ‘Steve’ on air.

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