Record £3m losses leave Yorkshire on the brink
YoRKSHIRE are set to announce record financial losses of around £3million with the club at risk of entering administration. the dire financial results will reveal the full cost of Yorkshire’s handling of Azeem Rafiq’s racism allegations, with the club facing a compensation bill for former staff of almost £2m and incurring legal fees of several hundred thousand pounds. the ECB’s disciplinary hearing triggered by Rafiq’s allegations begins today and could see Yorkshire given a heavy fine, which they would struggle to pay. the club have pleaded guilty to four charges relating to their failure to tackle the use of racist language and a further major financial hit from the ECB would bring their 160-year existence into question. Yorkshire’s handling of Rafiq’s complaints of suffering racist bullying, which they had been contesting at an employment tribunal, changed abruptly following the appointment of Lord Patel as chairman on November 5, 2021. Just three days later, he confirmed that he had agreed a £200,000 financial settlement with Rafiq, despite admitting to not having read the independent report into his allegations. the following month, he sacked Yorkshire’s entire coaching and medical staff despite the fact that many of them had never met Rafiq. the club subsequently admitted liability to claims for unfair dismissal, with the total cost in pay-offs agreed to date around £1.9m. As well as their current losses, they have £14.9m of debts owed to the Colin Graves trust, which they are trying to refinance ahead of a £3m repayment due later this year. Yorkshire’s dire financial position may lead to them receiving more lenient treatment from the ECB, who will not want the game’s most successful county to go bust. Removing international status from Headingley would condemn Yorkshire to bankruptcy, so they could escape with a small fine and a points deduction this summer.