Aussie men to support BLM with barefoot circle

The gesture will accompany more education on the subject this summer and beyond

Australia vice-captain Pat Cummins admits his side hasn't done enough to combat racism, revealing they now plan to take part in a barefoot circle before the start of every series.

Cummins and teammates were criticised earlier this year by West Indies legend Michael Holding for their "lame" reason for not taking a knee in support of the Black Lives Matter movement.

The squad have since spoken at length about the issue and agreed a barefoot circle, which seeks to acknowledge the traditional owners of the land, is the best way to make a statement about racism and a commitment to reconciliation.

Australia and New Zealand's women's sides both participated in the Indigenous ceremony before their season-opening series in Brisbane, while barefoot circles also formed part of recent NAIDOC week celebrations in the Marsh Sheffield Shield and Rebel WBBL.

Image Id: 1264D05D86DB40858A688C8336A3888C Image Caption: Australia and New Zealand in Brisbane // Getty

"Obviously not only as a sport but we as people are absolutely against racism. I think we could probably put our hands up and say we haven't done enough in the past and we want to get better," Cummins told reporters on Monday.

"Racism exists. We want to do our bit to try and help stop that and try and be better ... this is one small thing we're going to introduce this summer.

"In addition we're going to try to do a lot of work on our education, we're trying to learn as much about our history here in Australia in particular.

"We've come together as a team and think this is the best way we can demonstrate anti-racism as well as celebrating the Indigenous culture here."

Australia opted against taking a knee during their limited-overs series in England, with captain Aaron Finch indicating at the time that "education around this is more important than a protest".

Holding was scathing of that logic, prompting Australia coach Justin Langer to admit his team should have talked more about the issue before their first game on that tour.

Cummins suggested teammates will be supported if they elect to take a knee on November 27, when Australia's ODI series against India starts at the SCG, but the entire squad agreed that a barefoot circle would be the best way to make a united statement.

"In Australia we think the most marginalised group is the First Nations people, Indigenous people. We think the barefoot circle is a great way to celebrate them," the paceman said.

India Tour of Australia 2020-21

Australia Test squad: Tim Paine (c), Sean Abbott, Joe Burns, Pat Cummins, Cameron Green, Josh Hazlewood, Travis Head, Marnus Labuschagne, Nathan Lyon, Michael Neser, James Pattinson, Will Pucovski, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Mitchell Swepson, Matthew Wade, David Warner

Australia ODI & T20 squad: Aaron Finch (c), Sean Abbott, Ashton Agar, Alex Carey , Pat Cummins (vc), Cameron Green, Josh Hazlewood, Moises Henriques, Marnus Labuschagne, Glenn Maxwell, Daniel Sams, Kane Richardson, Steven Smith, Mitchell Starc, Marcus Stoinis, Matthew Wade, David Warner, Adam Zampa

India Test squad: Virat Kohli (c) (first Test only), Ajinkya Rahane (vice-captain), Rohit Sharma, Mayank Agarwal, Prithvi Shaw, KL Rahul, Cheteshwar Pujara, Hanuma Vihari, Shubman Gill, Wriddhiman Saha (wk), Rishabh Pant (wk), Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami, Umesh Yadav, Navdeep Saini, Kuldeep Yadav, Ravindra Jadeja, Ravichandran Ashwin, Mohammed Siraj

India ODI squad: Virat Kohli (c), Shikhar Dhawan, Shubman Gill, KL Rahul (wk), Sanju Samson (wk), Shreyas Iyer, Manish Pandey, Hardik Pandya, Mayank Agarwal, Ravindra Jadeja, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami, Navdeep Saini, Shardul Thakur.

India T20I squad: Virat Kohli (c), Shikhar Dhawan, Mayank Agarwal, KL Rahul (wicketkeeper), Shreyas Iyer, Manish Pandey, Hardik Pandya, Sanju Samson (wk), Ravindra Jadeja, Washington Sundar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami, Navdeep Saini, Deepak Chahar, T Natarajan

Dettol ODI Series v India

First ODI: November 27, SCG, 2.40pm AEDT

Second ODI: November 29, SCG, 2.40pm AEDT

Third ODI: December 2, Manuka Oval, 2.40pm AEDT

Dettol T20 INTL Series v India

First T20: December 4, Manuka Oval, 7.10pm AEDT

Second T20: December 6, SCG, 7.10pm AEDT

Third T20: December 8, SCG, 7.10pm AEDT

Tour matches

Australia A v India A, December 6-8, Drummoyne Oval

Australia A v Indians, December 11-13, SCG (day-night)

Vodafone Test Series v India

First Test: December 17-21, Adelaide Oval, 3pm AEDT (day-night)

Second Test: December 26-30, MCG, 10.30am AEDT

Third Test: January 7-11, SCG, 10.30am AEDT

Fourth Test: January 15-19, Gabba, 11am AEDT

*The matches and travel remain subject to any relevant government restrictions or requirements.