- according to Cricket Australia boss
(FOX SPORT) – Cricket Australia chief James Sutherland insists controversial West Indies opener Chris Gayle won’t be prevented from signing with a Big Bash franchise.
Gayle caused outrage in January following his infamous ‘Don’t blush baby’ boundary-line interview with Mel McLaughlin during his spell with the Melbourne Renegades.
But despite the bad publicity surrounding the incident, Sutherland appears to have back-tracked after Cricket Australia strongly intimated at the time that it would come over the top of any team that tried to sign Gayle for Big Bash 6.
“No matter what anyone at Cricket Australia thought (of the incident) at management level, board level, I think you’re on a slippery slope if you start making judgements on players who could or shouldn’t be playing in the Big Bash League or in our domestic competitions,” Sutherland said.
“Because, when does that ever end? My view is unless there’s a very, very strong reason along the lines of anti-corruption, then its difficult for us to be making those judgements.
“I’m not saying that it wouldn’t happen but my judgement is that it’s not appropriate it’s about the teams themselves to make the calls.”
Renegades Chairman Jason Dunstall said the team were open to all options in their recruitment process, including Gayle, and that position has not changed.
“You’d like to think there’s a place for everybody (in the BBL). The excitement he can generate is extraordinary,” said Dunstall. “We want all those types of players on display. That’s the idea. What we want is the best players in the world at the BBL.”
Gayle caused a social media explosion this week when he announced that he had named his first child, a baby girl, “Blush” – an apparent reference to the McLaughlin incident. Though many thought the batsman had pulled an elaborate troll, he has reaffirmed his initial announcement and been congratulated on the arrival of Blush by some of cricket and entertainment’s biggest names.