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News

Graham Thorpe says Ollie Robinson showed 'character' in aftermath of Twitter storm

Seamer ends NZ innings as leading wicket-taker after apologising for historic offensive tweets

Graham Thorpe says Ollie Robinson showed "character" on the second day of the first Test against New Zealand at Lord's.
Robinson's first day of Test cricket ended with him making an unreserved apology after tweets written by him between 2012 and 2013 emerged which contained sexist and racist material.
But despite admitting to being "ashamed" and "embarrassed", Robinson sustained his impressive on-field performance from the previous day. He demonstrated good skill and control in claiming four wickets in New Zealand's first innings and, but for a dropped catch by Stuart Broad, would have made it onto the Lord's honours board.
While Thorpe, the England assistant coach, made no attempt to excuse Robinson's comments, he did praise the manner in which he was able to retain his composure and perform to a high level.
Coming into the day with two wickets under his belt, Robinson was, perhaps, buoyed by the positive response given to him by the Lord's crowd - the announcement of his name earned warm applause from supporters - and he went on to not only take the most wickets in the innings, but record the best economy rate.
"It was a tough day for him yesterday," Thorpe said. "He had to say sorry to the dressing room and he had to say sorry to the world about what he did. So, from that perspective it's very hard for him. But he knows he made mistakes and that's why he had to make those apologies.
"But in our dressing room, we had to support him as well. And we were really pleased, actually, that he showed good character.
"He had to be pretty resilient because of what he's done. It's not easy to go back out onto the stage and perform and I thought his level of performance was exceptional in that first innings."
Thorpe also agreed that, in future, more effort should be put into assessing a player's social media history before their selection by England.
"Potentially, yes," he said. "That's something that might need to be looked at so days like yesterday don't happen."