Celebrating Britain's 101 Most Influential Asians 2024

© Asian Media Group - 2024


Lord Kamlesh Patel


ANYONE who knows Lord Patel of Bradford will tell you that few people you meet could be nicer, kinder or more considerate. They will tell you about his humility and humanity. They will gush that he is the one others turn to when they need a sensible head to get to the root of a problem. If 2022 was the year of fixing the racist reputation of Yorkshire County Cricket Club, then 2023 was about moving on and spending more time with his family. The peer will not talk about the re-appointment of, as club chair, Colin Graves, for a second time. Graves, remember, was in charge when the cricketer, Azeem Rafiq, was racially abused. Patel spent 2022 “taking Yorkshire County Cricket Club” on a journey. He described it as challenging and one which has left him “disheartened and disappointed” by a game he loves and a county he adores. When Patel started to scrutinise what had happened to Rafiq and others, he shook-up the entire infrastructure by sacking directors and other club staff, with the blessings of the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB). A tiny cabal made his life hell, he claimed. “This is not just a Yorkshire problem,” he told the GG2 Power List last year. We had several decades of people who came and complained to me.

So, this wasn’t just about Azeem Rafiq, hundreds of people came to me and said, this has been going on, this happened to my child, or this happen to me when I was a child at Yorkshire. So, Azeem was the only one brave enough to step up and carry on the battle. Others just gave up, and I think had I not been in the position I was, I would have given up because it was just relentless,

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