Romesh Ranganathan has woman ejected from gig amid 'blatant racism' from audience members

·Contributor
·3 min read
Romesh Ranganathan was heckled with racist abuse on the first night of his new stand-up comedy tour. (Matt Crossick/PA Images via Getty Images)
Romesh Ranganathan was heckled with racist abuse on the first night of his new stand-up comedy tour. (Matt Crossick/PA Images via Getty Images)

Romesh Ranganathan had a woman removed from one of his stand-up gigs after she reportedly heckled him with racist abuse.

The 43-year-old comedian and new presenter of The Weakest Link performed the return show of his delayed tour The Cynic's Mixtape on Thursday night at the Hammersmith Apollo.

An audience member told The Sun that the gig took a turn after Ranganathan made a joke about racism in football, in which he said he would "rather be a P**i than a Scouse".

Read more: Romesh Ranganathan says he's not proud of racist early jokes

They said this prompted one audience member to repeatedly shout "Milwall", to which Ranganathan said "Why are you letting everyone know you are a racist?".

"The lady at the front started yelling racist abuse and that he was sending her to sleep and so on, she was stood up pointing to him," said the source.

Watch: Anne Robinson delighted by Weakest Link reboot with Romesh Ranganathan

They added: “It was awful, blatant racism but Romesh handled it really well."

In footage obtained by the newspaper, Ranganathan can be seen interrupting his set to acknowledge the woman as security approached to remove her from the room.

He said: "Wait listen, I’m getting distracted. You’re going to have to shut the f*** up. What’s going on? Am I being a p**** here? Why are you stood up, what’s going on?"

Read more: Ranganathan breaks wrist during A League of Their Own filming

The crowd can be heard chanting "cheerio" as security guards escort the woman to the exit, with Ranganathan then revealing he had "mixed feelings" about the situation.

The comic said: "I was finding that very distracting, so I apologise for that, and so I'm glad that's been dealt with. But also I’m slightly sad that's the most excited you've sounded all evening."

Romesh Ranganathan has taken over from Anne Robinson as host of 'The Weakest Link'. (BBC Studios/Alan Peebles)
Romesh Ranganathan has taken over from Anne Robinson as host of 'The Weakest Link'. (BBC Studios/Alan Peebles)

Ranganathan began the Cynic's Mixtape Tour in 2019, but had to cancel a string of shows when the COVID-19 pandemic hit in early 2020. 

He has since taken on a new role as the presenter of the rebooted The Weakest Link, replacing its infamous former host Anne Robinson.

Read more: How would you do on The Weakest Link?

Announcing the job, he said it was a "double-edged sword" to take on the role, given the expectations many have after the success of its first run.

"The way that Anne did it was brilliant and I don’t know that I could get away with that. I don’t think I’ve got that in me, to take it to that level," he said.

He also confessed that one of his biggest worries was whether to do his own version of Robinson's famous wink of farewell.

Watch: Romesh Ranganathan urges ethnic minority communities to get COVID-19 jab

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