16th Oct, 2019

Former Pears sorry over lewd WhatsApp 'game'

Rob George 9th Jul, 2019 Updated: 9th Jul, 2019

FORMER Worcestershire batsmen Joe Clarke and Tom Kohler-Cadmore have been fined £2,000 each and apologised over their involvement in a lewd WhatsApp group which emerged during the trial of former team-mate Alex Hepburn.

Hepburn was found guilty of rape in April and jailed for five years.

During the trial the court heard how the pair, along with Hepburn, would use the social media app to take part in a ‘game’ to collect as many sexual conquests as possible.

Neither Clarke nor Kohler-Cadmore, 24, was charged with any criminal offence and there is no suggestion of any criminal wrongdoing by the pair.

The pair played for Worcestershire when the offence took place in 2017 but have since moved on to join Nottinghamshire and Yorkshire respectively.

At a hearing of the independent Cricket Discipline Commission (CDC) on Thursday (July 4), Clarke and Kohler-Cadmore pleaded guilty to charges of bringing the game into disrepute brought against them by English cricket’s ruling body, the ECB.

As well as being fined, both players were given an official reprimand and the pair were also ordered to attend a suitable course of educational training.

Both Clarke and Kohler-Cadmore were given four match bans which were deemed to have already been served because of the games they missed after being withdrawn from the England Lions tour in January.

Speaking after the hearing, 23-year-old Clarke said: “I would like to apologise to everyone concerned for my involvement in the WhatsApp group.

“I acknowledge what I did fell well below the standards expected of a professional sportsman. I am relieved I can now put this chapter behind me. I am extremely grateful for the guidance and support I have received from the PCA, Phoenix Management and Nottinghamshire CCC during this difficult time.

“I have learned a great deal over the past two years and I am thankful I can now move forward and focus wholly on the rest of the season.

Mr Kohler-Cadmore added: “I deeply regret my involvement in the WhatsApp group in 2017 which led to me being charged by the ECB. I fully accept the subsequent punishment and I now want to move forward with the rest of my career and life in a positive manner.

“It has been a difficult period and I appreciate the support I have received from Yorkshire County Cricket Club and especially the PCA who I will be working with to deliver social media education workshops.”

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