England Cricketers to Sports Black Lives Matter Logo on Shirt During West Indies Test Series
The Test series starts from July 8 (© AFP)

England cricketers will join their West Indies counterparts in raising awareness against racism by sporting an identical Black Lives Matter logo on their jerseys during the upcoming three-match Test series starting July 8.

The series has been named as ‘Raise the Bat’ with West Indies captain Jason Holder confirming last week his players are going to sport the BLM logo on the collar of their jerseys.

The decision was taken by England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) and has the full backing of captain Joe Root who will miss the series opener as he will be with his wife for the birth of their second child.

“It is important to show solidarity to the black community and to raise much needed awareness around the topics of equality and justice. The England players and management are unified in this approach and will use the platform of international cricket to fully support the objective of eradicating racial prejudice wherever it exists,” Root said.

“The majority of us do not understand what individuals from BAME (Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic) backgrounds have to go through when people make judgments because of the colour of their skin. As a group, we are learning about this and educating ourselves,” he added.

Root hopes the gesture will go a long way in raising awareness against the menace of racism.

“There has to be equal opportunity and equal rights for all. We hope by making this stance we can play our part in standing shoulder-to-shoulder as a team and we hope that by continuing to raise awareness we can move towards a society in which the colour of your skin and your background has no bearing on your opportunities. It is very simple, we believe there is no room for racism or any form of discrimination, anywhere,” he said.

The logo, designed by Alisha Hosannah, has been approved by ICC and is the same which featured on the shirts of all 20 Premier League football clubs.

ECB Chief Executive Officer Tom Harrison said the BLM logo has become a message of solidarity and drive for progress and societal change.

“The England and Wales Cricket Board fully support the message that Black Lives Matter. It has become a message of solidarity and a drive for progress and societal change. There can be no place for racism in society or our sport, and we must do more to tackle it,” Harrison said.

“We have a responsibility to ensure that cricket is truly a game for everyone. We will shortly set out further steps that build on the work we have already done to make cricket more inclusive and diverse in order to address some of the barriers which still exist for some communities,” he added.