Ex-Windies cricketer terms Otago cricket campaign as a 'racist slur'

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Otago (New Zealand), Nov.21 : A former West Indian and New Zealand cricketer has hit out at Otago's "it's all white here" promotion for the upcoming test in Dunedin.

Former wicketkeeper Sam Guillen, 84, said Otago had to rethink its "ridiculous idea" which would not be welcomed by the West Indies team members, who would see it as racism.

"I know exactly how the players will feel. The first thing that will go through their mind is it's white against black, which should never come into sport. Whoever did it will have to go to them and say we didn't mean it like that', but it should never have happened," stuff.co.nz quoted Guillen, as saying.

Guillen played five tests for the West Indies before immigrating to New Zealand and playing three tests for his new country.

The West Indies will play the Black Caps in Dunedin from December 11 to 15, with officials encouraging Dunedinites and spectators to use the catch-cry "it's all white here" and dress in white for the occasion.

Guillen, who lives in Christchurch, said he could not believe supposedly sensible people could come up with such a poor idea.

The Dunedin City Council defended the concept which it said mirrored "black-outs" created during All Blacks games in the city.

It is 28 years since the West Indies played a test in Dunedin during the acrimonious series in 1980.

During that test, won by New Zealand by one wicket, legendary quick bowler Michael Holding kicked over the stumps.

Guillen was in the side that claimed New Zealand's first Test victory, ironically against the West Indies in 1955.

ANI

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