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England Captain Tells Opponent 'There's Nothing Wrong With Being Gay'

12 February 2019

England cricket captain Joe Root has responded to West Indies bowler Shannon Gabriel after an alleged homophobic slur aimed at him in a verbal confrontation as tensions boiled over in the third Test on Monday.

Speaking after the day's play, Root was keen to move on from the incident but conceded Gabriel might regret his actions.

Exactly what Gabriel had said to receive this advice from Root is unknown but the fast bowler was warned by umpires Rod Tucker and Kumar Dharmasena.

"Well done Root", said Rainford-Brent.

"I just don't feel like I have to force it as much", he said of his extended run-up, which has dispensed with his sprinter-like initial burst of speed.

He added: "I wouldn't use the words so strong to say intimidate with pace but when you have pace, as someone who played the game as a fast bowler, it gives you more options of being able outfox the batters".

HEATED: Joe Root (left) issued a brilliant on-field response to Shannon Gabriel (right) (Pic: GETTY) Related Articles "I think it should stay on the field".

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Since the footage was released by Sky Sports News, the 28-year-old has received a huge amount of support with fans praising his stance.

However, Root's heroics with the bat were partly overshadowed by an on-field verbal exchange with West Indies paceman Gabriel as England stretched to a lead of 448 at the Darren Sammy Stadium.

West Indies coach Richard Pybus was unaware of any potential controversy at close of play, but told the BBC: "Nothing has been reported to me but if a comment was made we'll review it and if it was untoward we'll be addressing it".

Hussain, also a Sportsmail columnist, said: 'I don't know who said what to whom. but boy do I applaud Joe Root's reaction here. "I thought in my own mind I was an England player but I hadn't shown it", he said.

Between those milestones, it looked as though their union had been ended by Joseph's superb catch in his follow-through, only for Stokes to be called back to the middle - a welcome rub of the green for an England side that has been a distant second-best in this series.

Though West Indies have already clinched the series by winning the first two Tests, England will take comfort from being in great position to salvage a victory in the finale. "It's always a proper tussle out there".

England Captain Tells Opponent 'There's Nothing Wrong With Being Gay'