Aussie cricketer walks back plan for pro-Gaza messages on shoes at first Test

Australian cricketer Usman Khawaja will not wear shoes with messages highlighting the plight of people in Gaza when the first Test against Pakistan begins on Thursday, captain Pat Cummins says.

During training this week, the 36-year-old opening batsman Khawaja had hand-written slogans “Freedom is a human right” and “All lives are equal” on his footwear.

The Pakistan-born Khawaja had reportedly said he would wear the shoes for the opening Test in Perth.

But Cummins tells reporters “I spoke to him just quickly and he said he won’t be.”

“Just kind of drew attention to the ICC rules, which I don’t know if Uzzie was across beforehand,” he says, using a nickname for Khawaja. “Uzzie doesn’t want to make too big of a fuss.”

The International Cricket Council, the sport’s governing body, bans any messages during matches that relate to politics, religion or race.

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