Best in racism row

EX-ENGLAND coach Dick Best has been heavily criticised by anti-racism campaigners following a remark made on air about Delon Armitage.

Sky Sports News were forced to apologise after airing a race-related remark about Armitage, made by Best while he was being interviewed at Heathrow airport ahead of the squad announcement for the British Lions tour of South Africa.

Best’s Lions XV was presented on screen before he was asked about his choice of Armitage on the wing ahead of Ireland’s Tommy Bowe.

“You’ve always got to have a coloured boy in the team,” said Best.

Presenter Millie Clode later apologised. She said: “Best made remarks that he thought were off-camera. We would like to apologise for any offence this may have caused.”

Kick It Out, equality and inclusion campaigners, responded to the comments made by Best.

Director Piara Powar said: “Racial stereotyping affects us all. It may well be that Dick Best said what he said as an appreciation of what black players can bring to the game of rugby union.

“But we should firstly knock down the idea that there is some form of quota system in place for picking players, and secondly refute the idea that one ethnic group is inherently better at sport than any other.

“Ultimately these are dangerous profiles to paint and certainly not to be sniggered over.”


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