Sorry to rain on everyone’s parade but can people please calm down over What Chris Gayle Did a couple of days ago? Yes, he should not have asked journalist Mel McLoughlin out on a date live on national television- he should have waited until they were off camera. But no, his amorous advances could not be held down, so we were subjected to cringeworthy coverage of him complimenting her eyes then saying, ‘Don’t blush, baby’ when she looked embarrassed.
Of course, it wasn’t the best thing to do live on TV, but spare me the nonsense saying that he should be suspended or even sacked (I had a good laugh at that). Some people even claimed that what he did amounted to sexual harassment. Give me a break. He didn’t make any lewd comments towards her, he did not touch her inappropriately, he wasn’t breathing down her neck and he apologised twice during the interview when it dawned on him that a pitchside interview was probably not the best place to ask a woman journalist just doing her job out on a date.
I’m not sure what he was playing at. Did he really expect her to say yes live on air? Imagine if she did- she would have been the focus of all sorts of negative attention. People would call her unprofessional and start insinuating how and why she got her job, because we all know that’s what happens the minute a woman is appointed in a so-called ‘man’s role’.
That said, the way the po-faced Chief Executive of Cricket Australia was going on, you’d think Gayle was a threat to all Australian women. Standing there as if no man has ever asked a woman on a date before. Come off it- we all know it goes on, it’s just that Gayle was the only one silly enough to do it on camera. He may be one of the biggest names in world cricket but at least he now realises the world is not his nightclub.
He was fined for inappropriate behaviour which is understandable. I guess a stern talking-to would not have the required effect on a grown-ass man with more money than I can count.
The funny thing is he looked more embarrassed than she did. McLoughlin down brushed it off despite the blushing, while he now has to deal with the incident being replayed on countless ‘when cricket goes wrong’ DVD’s in the near future.
So next time Chris, if you really feel the urge to ask a lady out, even in this world we live in now where everyone has a camera phone, try to do it away from prying eyes and make sure you’re nowhere near a cricket field.