West Indies captain Jason Holder said he sympathises with Jofra Archer and urged people to rally behind the young England pacer who alleged he was subject to racist abuse during his time in isolation after breaching bio-secure protocols ahead of the 2nd Test in Manchester.
Jason Holder said there should be a “harsher penalty” for racist abuse and that Jofra Archer would have been traumatized by the racist comments that were directed at him on social media.
Responding to Archer’s column on the newspaper, Holder, in a column for the Daily Mail, said he has known the Barbados-born England pacer for a long time and that the youngsters did not mean harm to anyone when he broke the rules in the lead up to the 2nd Test.
“People are humans and make mistakes and it’s just important we all learn from Jofra’s mistake and appreciate the severity of the situation. We all know Jofra well from his time growing up in Barbados and let me tell you he’s a really good guy. He’s also young and I’m sure he didn’t mean to harm anyone,” Holder wrote.
“More than ever, now is the time for us all to unite behind him and show as much support as we can. We need to eradicate racism and abuse and anything we as a West Indies team can do to help him we will do. We all need to put our heads together to see what can be done.”
Holder said he has not spoken to Archer yet but would definitely do so while slamming the culture on social media wherein he believes people can get away easily after making inappropriate and hurtful comments.
The West Indies captain added that the visitors are keen on playing against Archer soon.
“Social media is always in our faces every time we pick up our phone and I think the people who run Instagram and Twitter, in particular, need to get a firmer grip on what goes on. You just cannot pop up on someone’s social media and leave an abusive comment and get away with it.
“There should be a harsher penalty to make sure it is handled with the severity it deserves.
“Jofra has certainly copped some flak since he started playing for England and we sympathise with him. As professional athletes, we all go through it and I would just encourage him to have his support system close by.
“We will all rally round him. Now is the time to come together and find solutions for these problems. I haven’t spoken to Jofra yet about this but I will do. It will certainly be good to see him back on the park and compete against him again.”