Joe Root is one of the greatest batsmen of our generation. The former English captain is also a great ambassador for the game. And it showed during this interaction with a West Indian bowler during the England VS West Indies Test series.
In what appears to have been a response to a homophobic slur, Root tells the bowler that there was nothing wrong with being gay. He asks him not to use ‘gay’ as an insult.
This is what Joe Root means to me, as a proud member of the LGBTQ+ family and a lifelong cricket fan. I wasn’t a fan of his on-field decisions but things like this are bigger than sport. Moments like this made life easier for me, a sports fan, to come out. Thank you, Rooty 🏳️🌈 pic.twitter.com/N7rD9wxW2F— Tommy Stewart (@tomandrewstew) April 15, 2022
Fans have been hailing Root for standing up against homophobia.
Love that this resurfaced! This man is truly a good human https://t.co/SVMutF5iLm— AllTheHarrysRockMe (@itsAnyaaa) April 17, 2022
Sums up Root perfectly, great cricketer, fantastic human being. https://t.co/pRfoGzEWbK— 🏏England and Wales Transplant Cricket🏏 (@ETransplantC) April 16, 2022
Don’t care about the decisions or results, as a bloke Root is the best of us and I will always be happy he was our captain https://t.co/IwUz54Ijq6— Josh Iris (@_joshiris) April 16, 2022
the bare minimum, yet quite significant coming from a sportsperson in this era. really really wish footballers and some fanbases could learn the same. https://t.co/f8vfZgWN3k— vinayuckkkkkkk unfunny as always (@shutupvinayak) April 15, 2022
Forget him being an unbelievable cricketer, the bloke is a supreme human 🤌🏼 https://t.co/a2rrGQw5S5— Alistair Seed (@alistairseed) April 15, 2022
This, with bells on. He stood up, when few do. https://t.co/7Mt55OkI65— William Hargreaves (@billhargreaves) April 15, 2022
This is the best piece of leadership from an England cricket captain that I can remember https://t.co/z7AjhFak2H— Richard Nevell (@RichardNevell) April 15, 2022
Hadn’t come across this before. Glad I have now. Great message, great cricketer. https://t.co/FfrQ8SuDNa— Michael Brooks (@DrMichaelBrooks) April 15, 2022
He wasn’t a tactically great captain. And wasn’t helped by being saddled with a poor team. But a great player? Undoubtedly. And, more importantly, a decent human being. One of my favourite Joe Root moments too. https://t.co/xWyBFpse0L— Dan Collins (@Dan_Collins68) April 15, 2022
Just an all round good bloke, and one hell of a cricketer https://t.co/8egCBnSQH3— The Secret Pear (@Glossywicket) April 15, 2022
joe fruit best cricketer loml he stopped worlds with this <333 https://t.co/Ch9eTHaF3V— mannie (@sapphicstoinis) April 15, 2022
That’s the bare minimum, to be honest, but in a world where sportspersons, especially cricketers remain woefully behind the times, what Root did should at least become a benchmark for the least you can do as a person of enormous influence.