The Ashes: Cricket Australia apologises for 'racist' Monty Panesar tweet

Published: Dec 05, 2013, 21:15 IST | Agencies |

Cricket Australia has apologised for tweeting a picture of four Sikh men with the message: 'Will the real Monty Panesar please stand up?!'

Cricket Australia on Thursday apologised for a tweet on its official Twitter account referencing England spinner Monty Panesar with a photo of four bearded men wearing turbans and dressed as Teletubbies.

Posted just ahead of the start of the second Ashes Test in Adelaide, the Cricket Australia tweet read: "Will the real Monty Panesar please stand up?!"

The CA post a photo of four bearded men with turbans dressed in colours as if they were in the Teletubbies on Twitter. The picture was accompanied by the caption: ''Will the real Monty Panesar please stand up''.

It sparked claims of racism, and CA moved quickly to remove the offending item and apologise.

"We apologise for any offence caused with our previous tweet. That was certainly not the intention. It has been removed," CA said in a subsequent tweet about the photo of the men, dressed as the popular children's television characters.

The original tweet prompted a backlash by Twitter users, with one saying "Looks like @CricketAus left an idiot in charge of their Twitter machine" and another blasting it as "casual racism".

The controversial tweet comes just days after a ground announcer in Alice Springs was stood down after he allegedly introduced Panesar in an Indian accent during England's tour match last weekend.

CA said announcer David Nixon's conduct was "inappropriate" during the match between England and a CA Chairman's XI. Nixon later said the manner in which he introduced Panesar -- England-born but of Indian descent -- should not be interpreted as a racial slur.

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