England to wear 'Black Lives Matter' logo against West Indies
England will join the West Indies in wearing "Black Lives Matter" logos on their shirts during their three-match Test series, but the England and Wales Cricket Board insisted Thursday that "it is not an endorsement of a political organisation".
The tourists had previously announced they would be wearing the logo which is also being worn by Premier League footballers. The ECB said its decision had been "fully supported" by England players led by Test captain Joe Root and stand-in skipper Ben Stokes.
ECB chief executive Tom Harrison made it clear, however, the move showed support for "progress and societal change" and did not extend to explicit backing for any wider political aims.
"It has become a message of solidarity and a drive for progress and societal change," he said. "There can be no place for racism in society or our sport, and we must do more to tackle it."
But he added: "Our support of that message is not an endorsement, tacit or otherwise, of any political organisation, nor the backing of any group that calls for violence or condones illegal activity.
"We are aware of certain aspects of the movement that promote their own political views, and their actions are not supported in any way by the ECB and our players."
It is understood, however, that the England squad will not take a knee ahead of the first Test, which starts in Southampton on July 8.
West Indies all-rounder Carlos Brathwaite, who will be commentating on the series for the BBC, said, however, it would require more than taking a knee to tackle deep-rooted racism.
"For me it's just cosmetic -- that may ruffle a few feathers," said Brathwaite, the star of the West Indies' 2016 World Twenty20 triumph.
"The biggest change needs to be legislative and needs to be the reprogramming of the wider society."
Feature image courtesy: AFP / Adrian Dennis