English cricketer Alex Hales on Friday apologised for appearing in blackface at a party in 2009, stating his behaviour as "reckless and foolish".
In a post on Instagram, Hales said he had gone to a 2009 New Year's Eve party as US hip-hop artist Tupac Shakur because he "is, was, always will be my favourite musician".
Of the photo, published in the Sun, he said: "The theme was musicians and Tupac is, was and always will be my favourite musician, so I went as him. I obviously realise that this is incredibly disrespectful and I want to apologise for all the offence this has no doubt caused."
"It was incredibly reckless and foolish on my behalf, so I want to apologise for that, apologise to the club for the embarrassment it would have caused them. I guess my twenties was full of mistakes like that, reckless mistakes off the field that cost me, let down family, let down team-mates, let down friends, close relationships I had during my twenties."
"Some of those decisions I'll regret for the rest of my life, and the last few years being away from the spotlight a little bit has given me a chance to try and better myself as a human, keep getting better at cricket, but getting better off the field as well. It's something I feel like I've done, and I'm continuing to strive to do," he added.
Hales' club, Nottinghamshire, said it had "extended the scope" of its investigation into his behaviour following the publication of the photo. It had "commenced the appropriate internal process" following Rafiq's testimony about Hales.
In a statement, the club added: "Alex will be subject to the club's established disciplinary process and has indicated his willingness to participate in the investigation." This comes after, the 32-year-old batter on Wednesday denied "any racial connotation" in naming his dog 'Kevin'. Notably, Azeem Rafiq alleged that the name was used by former Yorkshire team-mate Gary Ballance "to describe people of colour".