ESSEX have been charged by the Cricket Regulator with failing to address alleged “systemic” racist language and conduct at the club between 2001 and 2010.

The county have been charged with breaching Directive 3.3 of the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB).

The Cricket Regulator said in a statement: “ECB Directive 3.3 concerns conduct, acts or omissions which may be prejudicial to the interests of cricket or which may bring the game of cricket or any cricketer or group of cricketers into disrepute.

“It is alleged by the Cricket Regulator that there was systemic use of racist and/or discriminatory language and/or conduct at Essex, during the period between 2001 and 2010, which Essex failed to address.

“An independent panel of the Cricket Discipline Commission will hear the case in due course.”

Essex said they had fully co-operated with the Cricket Regulator and would continue to do so, and that they intend to “participate willingly” with the Cricket Discipline Commission which will hear the case.

In 2021 Essex commissioned an independent report into allegations of racist language and conduct made by Jahid Ahmed, Zoheb Sharif and Maurice Chambers, which was conducted by Katharine Newton KC.

Her report, published last December, found reference to players’ ethnic, racial and religious origins was “entirely normalised and tolerated behaviour” within the dressing-room culture at Essex between the mid-1990s until around 2013, under the misguided belief that it was acceptable ‘banter’.

Essex announced in February they had sanctioned individuals in connection with Newton’s findings, but did not name them.

“While the individuals are not named to align with the anonymised report, Essex CCC takes allegations of racism extremely seriously and the measures are a further commitment to creating an inclusive and welcoming club for everyone,” a statement from Essex at the time said.

“Essex CCC have shared the measures with the England and Wales Cricket Board and reaffirms its pledge to promoting equality, diversity, and inclusion within cricket to prevent such incidents from occurring in the future.”

In July last year, Yorkshire were fined £400,000 – £300,000 suspended for two years – and docked 48 Championship points and four in the T20 Blast over their handling of allegations of discrimination by former player Azeem Rafiq, and a failure to address the systemic use of racist and discriminatory language over a prolonged period between 2004 and 2021.