Chris Gayle 'sexism' row: Social media reaction
West Indies cricketer Chris Gayle's "inappropriate" comments to an Australian female reporter have cost him A$10,000 and have sparked plenty of reaction on social media.
Gayle was speaking to journalist Mel McLaughlin during a Big Bash League match in Hobart on Monday and said the following: "To see your eyes for the first time is nice. Hopefully we can have a drink afterwards. Don't blush baby."
The remarks were widely condemned as sexist, but Gayle apologised afterwards. However, he added that the reaction was "out of proportion". .
He also posted the following tweets in the wake of the exchange, including retweeting a message of support from TV presenter Piers Morgan.
In the 24 hours since the interview, his name has been tweeted about 27,000 times. Some people also used the hashtag #dontblushbaby in reference to one of the comments he made to the female journalist:
The trend started in Australia but quickly spread to other countries including the UK, India and Jamaica, where Gayle is from.
His comments also prompted a strong reaction from the cricketing community and sports reporters.
Former England all-rounder Andrew "Freddie" Flintoff tweeted:
BBC cricket commentator Alison Mitchell tweeted her reaction, calling Gayle's behaviour "unprofessional and inappropriate":
And Fox Sports reporter Neroli Meadows tweeted that it was "not funny" or "original":
Meanwhile, Australian hockey international Georgie Parker called for "calm":
Mel McLaughlin has yet to tweet on the matter herself, but her comments have been widely spread and discussed by media colleagues, with Australian broadcaster ABC tweeting:
Other tweeters have put it down to "banter":
But that was dismissed by others, with the Guardian's Sachin Nakrani tweeting:
And one bookmaker added the following tweet:
Compiled by Stephen Fottrell. Additional reporting by Diana Rusk.