Hobart: Australia veteran all-rounder Shane Watson has said he won’t be disappointed if flamboyant batsman Chris Gayle is denied a return to the Big Bash League (BBL), and added that the West Indian’s controversial post-match interview hardly came as a shock as the behaviour was fairly expected.
Watson made it clear he thought Gayle had overstepped the mark with Channel 10 reporter Mel McLaughlin, and supported Cricket Australia’s plans to ban Gayle from BBL.
The Aussie all-rounder’s comments could spark some fiery scenes in the middle of Spotless Stadium on Monday when Watson’s Sydney Thunder hosts Gayle’s Melbourne Renegades.
“There is no doubt people have always loved coming along and watching him (Gayle) play because of the entertainment he can certainly provide. But there is always a line outside the game of cricket as well,” Watson was quoted as saying by Daily Telegraph on Thursday.
“In the end the people love the entertainment part of cricket, but there’s also a respect, that part of playing the game on and off the field in the right spirit. In the end there are people who will be making decisions either way (about Gayle’s return). It’s not just what you bring on the field, it’s what you bring off the field as well, which is as important,” he said.
The incident drew flak from social media and Gayle was fined 10,000 Australian dollars (Rs.4,68,111) for making the dating proposal live.
The 36-year-old Caribbean star released a statement on Thursday which said that he along with his lawyer would “immediately commence defamation proceedings against Fairfax Media” after it published reports which claimed that he exposed himself to a woman in Sydney while training for the World Cup last year.
“I have played against Chris for a long time, since I started really, and that behaviour is fairly expected. People who know Chris Gayle will know those are the sort of things he can do at times, and at an inappropriate time, obviously it gets him into a fair bit of trouble,” Watson said.