Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden says the England and Wales Cricket Board “has gone over the top” in suspending bowler Ollie Robinson for historical racist and sexist tweets.
The posts from 2012 and 2013 were revealed while Robinson was making his England debut during the drawn first Test against New Zealand at Lord’s.
Robinson, 27, has been dropped for the second Test, which begins at Edgbaston on Thursday.
Dowden asked the ECB to “think again”.
Dowden said the tweets “offensive and wrong” but “also a decade old and written by a teenager”.
The tweets, posted when Robinson was aged 18 and 19, came to light on Wednesday afternoon, while he was on the field.
After play, he apologised, saying he was “embarrassed” and “ashamed”.
“I am sorry, and I have certainly learned my lesson today,” he said. “I want to make it clear that I’m not racist and I’m not sexist.”
More to follow.