Ollie Robinson suspended from all international cricket
Seamer unavailable for second Test pending disciplinary investigation into historic tweets
Ollie Robinson has been suspended from all international cricket pending the outcome of a disciplinary investigation following historic tweets he posted in 2012 and 2013.
As a result, Robinson is unavailable for selection for the second Test against New Zealand starting at Edgbaston on Thursday.
Announcing his suspension on Sunday, the ECB confirmed that Robinson will leave the England camp immediately and return to his county, Sussex.
Robinson issued an apology on Wednesday after admitting to posting "racist and sexist" comments on Twitter as a teenager. News of the tweets emerged shortly after Robinson walked onto the field at Lord's in his Test debut earlier that day. It was also just after England and New Zealand players had stood on the side of the field shortly before the start of the first Test in a 'moment of unity' with the home players wearing T-shirts which denounced various forms of discrimination.
Speaking after the drawn first Test, in which Robinson took a total of seven wickets - with 4 for 75 and 3 for 26 - and scored 42 in England's first innings, Joe Root, the England captain, said that while Robinson's debut had been "exceptional" from an on-field performance point of view, his historical actions off-field were unacceptable.
"He's contributed well with the bat, his performance with the ball was excellent," Root said. "He's showed high levels of skill and he's definitely got the game that can be successful in Test cricket.
"But in regards to the stuff that's happened off the field, it's not acceptable within our game. We all know that. He addressed the dressing room straight away. He obviously spoke to you guys and other media outlets straight away, fronted up to it. He showed a lot of remorse from that point onwards. You can see it's very genuine from how he's been around the group and the team.
"I couldn't believe them [the tweets], personally. I didn't really know how to take it on the surface. I think the most important thing is Ollie is part of this dressing room and we had to support him. We had to try and do everything that we could to give him an opportunity to learn and understand he has to do better.
"I think it's a great lesson for everyone within our game that we can all do more. We all have to keep looking to educate ourselves, trying to better the environment for everyone, trying to be as inclusive as we can, keep making everyone feel comfortable to play what a wonderful sport we have."
In the lead-up to the first Test, Root had said that the 'moment of unity' would mark the start of a year of action to improve inclusivity and diverstiy within the sport.
"It starts with us players at the top of the game," he said on Sunday." We set out the week with that moment of unity and we're doing a lot of work behind the cricket that we want to make big change in the game and we want to make it more inclusive, more diverse.
"I think the most important thing is we keep trying to do everything we can to better our sport, that we keep learning and we keep finding ways of making our game as best as we can.
"We can look back about how this could have been handled better, but the fact is it shouldn't have happened. And if we continue to keep trying to better the game right now, then in years to come this shouldn't be an issue. This shouldn't be something that happens within cricket. We've got to move forward from this, learn from this and do everything we can to make sure it doesn't happen again."
The ECB promised to conduct a full invstigation once the Tweets emerged.
After play on Wednesday, Robinson said: "On the biggest day of my career so far, I am embarrassed by the racist and sexist tweets that I posted over eight years ago, which have today become public. I want to make it clear that I'm not racist and I'm not sexist.
"I deeply regret my actions, and I am ashamed of making such remarks. I would like to unreservedly apologise to anyone I have offended, my teammates and the game as a whole in what has been a day of action and awareness in combatting discrimination from our sport."