The West Indies cricket team has received permission to wear the Black Lives Matter logo on their shirts during their three-Test match series against England, which begin at the Ageas Bowl in Southampton on July 8.
“This is a pivotal moment in history for sports, for the game of cricket and for the West Indies cricket team,” said the West Indies team captain Jason Holder, in a statement issued by the team. “We have come to England to retain the Wisden Trophy but we are very conscious of happenings around the world and the fight for justice and equality. We believe we have a duty to show solidarity and also help raise awareness.
“We did not take our decision lightly,” Holder continues. “We know what it is for people to make judgments because of the color of our skin, so we know what it feels like. This goes beyond the boundary.”
Holder added that “There must be equality and there must be unity. Until we get that as people, we cannot stop. We have to find some way to have equal rights and people must not be viewed differently because of their ethnic background or the color of their skin.”
The team will also be joined by the English side, as players will also wear the logo on their collars, calling it an “act of solidarity” with their Caribbean opponents.
“It is important to show solidarity to the black community and to raise much-needed awareness around the topics of equality and justice,” says current English team captain, Joe Root. “The England players and management are unified in this approach and will use the platform of international cricket to fully support the objective of eradicating racial prejudice wherever it exists.”
The circular logo incorporates a clenched fist in place of the letter “A” in the word “Black.” The graphic was designed by Alisha Hosannah, the partner of Watford Football Club striker Troy Deeney. The design has already appeared on the shirts of English Premier League soccer teams since the league resumed in June.
Deeney expressed he and Hosannah’s joy at the team’s gesture. “Alisha and I are immensely proud to be asked to take part in a monumental moment in world sport. This amazing decision by the West Indies cricket team to show their support for Black Lives Matter.”