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Gayle blasted for comments to female reporter

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

HOBART—Chris Gayle’s comments to a female reporter during an interview broadcast live on Australian television have been criticised by the head of the Big Bash League.

After scoring 41 from 15 deliveries in the Melbourne Renegades win over the Hobart Hurricanes in the BBL last night, the former West Indies captain suggested to television reporter Mel McLaughlin that the pair go out for a drink. He added, “Don’t blush,” during an awkward pause in the interview.

The comments drew heavy criticism on social media and were described by Anthony Everard, head of the BBL, as “disrespectful and simply inappropriate.”

“We’ll certainly be talking to him (Gayle) and the Renegades about it,” Everard said in a statement posted on Twitter. “There’s just no place in the BBL, or for that matter cricket anywhere, for that sort of behaviour.”

Channel 10 head of sport David Barham was quoted by the Herald Sun newspaper as saying the network was deeply offended and was seeking an apology.

The BBL, one of a growing number of domestic Twenty20 cricket tournaments, is a TV ratings winner in Australia and drew a crowd of 80,000 for a match at the Melbourne Cricket Ground over the weekend. As part of the broadcasts, some players wear cameras on their caps or batting helmets and are involved in live interviews during the action.

Barham told the Sun Herald that Gayle would no longer be fitted with a microphone for on-field comments. Renegades chief executive Stuart Coventry said he agreed that Gayle’s comments were out of line.

“We’ll certainly be talking to him in association with Cricket Australia about it,” Coventry said. 

Earlier, Gayle produced a whirlwind knock as Melbourne Renegades stormed to an emphatic five-wicket victory over Darren Sammy’s Hobart Hurricanes. He blasted 41 from 15 deliveries, an innings which provided the momentum for the visitors to chase down a victory target of 141 in a mere 14 overs at the Bellerive Oval.