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» BREAKING NEWS, Featured » DURING HIS DEFAMATION TRIAL, CRICKETER CHRIS GAYLE DENIES EXPOSING HIS GENITALS TO MASSAGE THERAPIST!

DURING HIS DEFAMATION TRIAL, CRICKETER CHRIS GAYLE DENIES EXPOSING HIS GENITALS TO MASSAGE THERAPIST!

By Wayde Brown

 

Explosive West Indies batsman Chris Gayle has told a defamation trial in Sydney he was devastated and “heartbroken” by claims made by Fairfax Media that he exposed his genitals to a female masseuse, saying the allegations were “some of the most hurtful things” he has confronted in his life.

Chris Gayle

Chris Gayle

Gayle, who gave evidence on the opening day, is suing the publisher over a series of articles, published in January last year, which claimed he indecently exposed himself to and propositioned massage therapist Leanne Russell during a training session for the 2015 World Cup.

“I have to defend myself because I strongly believe you stand for something or you fall for anything,” the cricketer said.

Asked if he had ever exposed himself to Russell, Gayle responded “never”.

Gayle’s account was supported by Windies teammate Dwayne Smith who was called to give evidence on the second day of the trial.

Dwayne Smith

Dwayne Smith

Smith agreed he was in the changing room and saw Russell but denied he saw Gayle pull up his towel and expose his genitals. He also said he did not hear Gayle ask Russell “Is this what you are looking for” when she entered the change room and said she was looking for a towel.

“That did not happen,” Smith said. “That is something I would remember if it happened.”

Smith also denied seeing an email from team manager Richie Richardson to all players after the incident, which said Russell had been made to feel “uncomfortable” by some of the players.

Gayle had been playing for the Melbourne Renegades in the Big Bash T20 when the articles appeared. They were published less than 24 hours after the left-hander made headlines by inviting Channel Ten reporter Mel McLaughlin, during a live interview, to have a drink with him. The Renegades fined Gayle $10,000 for his remarks.

Chris-Gayle-1

The journalist who wrote the first of the stories in question, the sports editor of the Age, Chloe Saltau, told the court that after the “firestorm” in the media over Gayle’s on-field comments to McLaughlin, she received a tip that Gayle had behaved inappropriately with other women in sport.

Saltau said an acquaintance sent her a Facebook message saying she had a story about Gayle. The woman who sent that message was Russell, who had met Saltau and was a colleague of her husband’s.

Saltau called Russell and they began a discussion about writing her story, which was about Gayle’s behavior towards her while she was working as a team masseuse in 2015.

Russell told Saltau she thought the story was relevant in light of the McLaughlin interview. Saltau told the court Russell said the “catalyst” to tell her story was that the McLaughlin interview made her “physically sick”.

However, Russell did not want to be identified by name or by profession, Saltau told the court.

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