Letters - A cricketer's brave stand

Gladstone Small was not just "one of the great triers" on the cricket pitch (Jason Cowley, Sport, 3 February); he was courageous off it. When David Graveney - now chair of the England selectors - was assembling the last rebel tour of apartheid South Africa in 1989, Small was a particular target. The organisers needed a black man in the party and the financial inducements were very high. In addition, Warwickshire, his county, had close South African ties, as had senior figures at Lord's and the Professional Cricketers' Association - all people with influence over Small's future.

He said no to South Africa, telling Cricket Life International magazine: "I could not contemplate going to a country where someone like me would only be able to enjoy the privileges and amenities in the capacity of an 'honorary white' and then have to look across the road into the eyes of a fellow black man who fell on the wrong side of the fence."

John Booth
London N19

This article first appeared in the 10 February 2003 issue of the New Statesman, Stop: wrong PM on the line