Ireland basketball CEO apologizes for post about Sterling

AP , Friday 9 Jul 2021

Raheem Sterling
England's Raheem Sterling, left, is fouled by Denmark's Mathias Jensen and a penalty is awarded during the Euro 2020 soccer semifinal match between England and Denmark at Wembley stadium in London, Wednesday, July 7, 2021. (AP)

The chief executive of Ireland's basketball federation has apologized for an offensive social media post about England soccer player Raheem Sterling.

Bernard O'Byrne wrote ``BLACK DIVES MATTER!!!'' in response to a BBC Facebook post about the controversial penalty won by Sterling in England's 2-1 victory over Denmark in the European Championship semifinals.

The penalty was awarded by the referee in extra time. A video review of the incident confirmed the decision.

``My choice of words commenting on a penalty incident were not thought out,`` O'Byrne said in a statement issued by Basketball Ireland late Thursday. ``It was an error of judgement and I wholeheartly apologize for the comments.''

The governing body said O'Byrne had made the comment from his personal account and that the post has since been deleted.

``Basketball Ireland would like to stress its ongoing commitment to inclusion and basketball's diverse community, which has been led by Mr. O'Byrne in recent years,'' the federation said in Thursday's statement.

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