London [UK], November 27 (ANI): Former England skipper Michael Vaughan apologised to Azeem Rafiq and said that he is "sorry for the hurt he has gone through", after speaking publicly for the first time since being implicated in the Yorkshire racism scandal.
Vaughan has been stood down from BBC Test Match Special's commentary team for the forthcoming Ashes, in the wake of Rafiq's racial discrimination claims.
"I don't [remember saying that]. "My recollection from that day, as I've said, I was a Yorkshire player for 18 years, I was the first player to sign for that club that was not born in the county, so for 18 years we had gone from me being the first to sign for the club, Sachin Tendulkar being the first from overseas, to players being able to sign from other clubs," said Vaughan as reported by ESPNcricinfo.
"I'd be lying if I would sit here now and say that I never heard words or conversations that I would certainly pick out now. That [comment] hurts because I've always felt that every single team that I have been involved in, the biggest praise I ever got as England captain for six years was that I was the kind of person that really galvanized the group, got the team working together as one. I'm sorry for the hurt that [Rafiq] has gone through," he added.
Earlier this month, a parliamentary select committee hearing was held, where the MPs heard from former cricketer Azeem Rafiq in the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee (DCMS) hearing, about his calls for disciplinary action to be taken by Yorkshire County Cricket Club following its investigation which found he had been subjected to racial harassment and bullying.
Rafiq fought back tears when he told MPs the word 'P***' was "used constantly" across his two spells at Yorkshire and no one in leadership challenged it.
Earlier, Rafiq had claimed that Michael Vaughan in 2009 told him and two other Asian players that there are "too many of you lot, we need to do something about it".
Asked about Vaughan, Rafiq said: "It's important on Michael that we don't make it all about Michael. "It was a long time ago. He might not remember it because it doesn't mean anything to him." Vaughan, however, had denied the allegations. (ANI)