A reporter’s awkward on-air hug with a female colleague has led to comparisons to cricketer Chris Gayle.
Australian sports journalist Hamish McLachlan embraced former Miss Universe contestant Monika Radulovic as she was part of the way through a broadcast on her first day as a weather reader.
The incident, on Australia’s Weekend Sunrise show, saw McLachlan hug Radulovic before she laughed as she pushed him away.
“Professional please, my goodness,” she can be heard saying.
McLachlan then jokingly replies: “There’s been stuff all week on that … I’m not Chris Gayle”.
It comes after West Indies cricketer Chris Gayle was fined by his club after sparking a backlash by asking a sports reporter out while she interviewed him on air.
Viewers took to social media to complain about McLachlan’s actions.
John Alexander posted on the Sunrise Facebook page: “I’m confused! One minute you guys are discussing Chris Gayle’s crappy behaviour and the next you have some horse racing bloke copping a feel of your weather presenter!”
Another viewer tweeted: “So how is this ok? Or different to what @henrygayle did and was so unfairly criticised for”.
The presenters both later apologised for the incident on the show.
McLachlan said: “I understand people have made stuff of it on social media and if I’ve offended anyone at home I’m apologising for that absolutely.”
Turning to Radulovic, he then said: “More importantly I apologise if I’ve offended you because I want to have fun and that is my fault if I’ve offended you.”
The weather presenter said she was not offended, and pointed out to viewers that the pair are friends.