Moeen Ali on Ollie Robinson, who is now cleared to return to international cricket after suspension: “I am sure he has learnt from his mistakes. He has done his time in terms of the ban. I think everybody makes mistakes – you forgive, forget, carry on with life and try and move on”
Last Updated: 03/07/21 1:20pm
Moeen Ali would welcome Ollie Robinson back into the England fold and believes the Sussex seamer has “learnt from his mistakes” after being cleared to resume his international career following his ban for posting historical offensive tweets.
Robinson was handed an eight-match suspension by the independent Cricket Discipline Commission on Saturday for posting a number of racist and sexist social-media messages between 2012 and 2014.
Five matches of that have been suspended for two years and with Robinson already missing three games during the investigation – England’s second Test against New Zealand, plus two Vitality Blast matches for Sussex – he is now eligible to return to cricket.
The 27-year-old’s tweets emerged during his Test debut against New Zealand at Lord’s last month and overshadowed his success on the field, with the paceman taking seven wickets in the match.
England all-rounder Moeen said of Robinson: “Of course I would welcome him back. I have only known him for a short period but he seems a very nice guy and I get on really well with him.
“I am sure he has learnt from his mistakes. He has done his time in terms of the ban. I think everybody makes mistakes – you forgive, forget, carry on with life and try and move on.”
The England and Wales Cricket Board withdrew Robinson from the second Test against New Zealand at Edgbaston and made him unavailable for international consideration while the independent investigation into his tweets was conducted.
Moeen praised the ECB for its stance and the CDC for giving Robinson a ban and hopes the episode can show that discriminatory behaviour will not be tolerated.
Ali, speaking ahead of England’s third and final ODI against Sri Lanka in Bristol on Sunday, added: “I thought the ECB did the right thing pulling him out of the Test series and I think [the punishment is sufficient], that the right thing has been done.
“Regardless of the length of the punishment, the fact there was punishment was good.
“It’s all about looking forward now and how you can’t get away with these kinds of things, that things need to change and people need to change.
“Even as a young player coming through the county circuit, you have to be careful with things you tweet.
“There are loads of things that will come out of this and hopefully for the good in the future.”
Sky Sports Cricket pundit and former England batsman Mark Butcher added: “I think it was handled exactly as it should have been.
“The player had to be suspended, they had to make sure there were no further cases to answer, they had to go through that process. The historical nature of the tweets would have caused the leniency.”
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