Broad Denial as He Says He is Innocent Over Wage Tweet

Published: 29th January 2015 08:27 AM  |   Last Updated: 29th January 2015 08:27 AM   |  A+A-

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There were other things Stuart Broad wanted to talk about, but inevitably conversation turned to a comment he made on Twitter about people on the minimum wage. Broad has now -apologised for his comments after receiving a litany of angry replies.

Ahead of the crucial one-day international against India tomorrow, Broad tweeted: "I've heard if you earn minimum wage in England you're in the top 10% earners in the world #stay #humble." Broad insisted that his motives were not malign. But the sight of a millionaire, public-school-educated athlete seemingly telling people earning pounds 6.50 an hour to "stay humble" was not, as they say in the world of PR, a great look.

Broad later deleted the post and sought to limit the damage by trying to clarify that the message "stay humble" was aimed at himself. "It was genuinely innocent," he said yesterday. "I was quite surprised at the size of the world. I didn't mean any offence. Maybe misjudged it a bit."

One of the franker and more personable tweeters in the current England squad - not there is a great deal of competition for that honour - Broad has had a taste of this before. In May last year, the England and Wales Cricket Board had a friendly word over comments he made on Twitter that appeared to question Saeed Ajmal's bowling action.

On one hand, Team England are making a conscious effort to re-engage the public after the train wreck of 2014, and comments like Broad's scarcely help. On the other, part of -building this affinity is presenting the public with figures that are recognisably human. Perversely, then, Broad's tweet displayed a certain degree of perspective, even if he managed to offend thousands on the internet in the process.

Fortunately, the storm soon passed. Broad said: "I don't look at my 'mentions', so I only heard about it. We're quite lucky with the abuse we receive compared to footballers, I wouldn't want to see Wayne Rooney's."

Broad also defended county cricket against criticism from Kevin Pietersen, who referred to second-string players as "muppets on pounds 18,000 or pounds 15,000". "You have to earn your stripes," Broad said. "I think that figure Kevin used is a bit below the minimum anyway, so it was a bit off the mark. I don't think he meant any offence. It was just a bit misguided."

Broad's best bet to win back some friends would be to recapture some form against India tomorrow. He has not taken a one-day international wicket for almost a year. But with the Perth wicket likely to suit his steepling style and changes of pace, there can be no better time to break his duck. The winners qualify for Sunday's tri-series final against Australia.


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