Danny Morrison faces criticism for calling Mithali Raj 'my dear' during interview

Danny Morrison faces criticism for calling Mithali Raj ‘my dear’ during interview

A number of fans as well as journalists took to Twitter to criticise the choice of words used by the veteran commentator.

Danny Morrison and Mithali Raj
Danny Morrison and Mithali Raj. (Photo Source: Twitter and IPL/BCCI)

Danny Morrison might be one of the most popular and loved commentators in the game but the former New Zealand cricketer is currently in the news for all the wrong reasons. Morrison, who is currently in the UAE as a part of the commentary panel for the ongoing IPL 2020, has landed in hot water for addressing India’s legendary Mithali Raj “my dear” during an interview.

Morrison was interviewing Velocity captain Mithali Raj after her team’s loss in the ongoing Women’s T20 Challenge in Sharjah. He started the interview by calling Mithali “my dear” while asking the team’s plan for Friday which is an off day.

“Tomorrow’s a day off, my dear, Mithali Raj … what are you going to do, what are Velocity going to do tomorrow?” asked Morrison. Mithali reacted normally to Morrison’s comment and was not looking surprised either. After she finished her reply, Morrison concluded the interviewing by telling her, “Chin up, keep smiling.”

Danny Morrison faces the heat

Danny Morrison’s comments, however, did not go down well with many. A number of fans as well as journalists took to Twitter to criticise the choice of words used by the veteran commentator. Australian sportswriter and broadcaster Isabelle Westbury was one of the first to raise an objection to a female cricketer being called “my dear” during an interview as she tweeted, “Don’t call international sportswomen ‘my dear’ in interviews. You wouldn’t say it to a man. It shouldn’t need to be said.”

“I worry (a lot) about overreacting to these kinds of comments, to commentators who I’m sure do not set out to be patronising. We all slip up, I get that. But I also firmly believe that media have a responsibility to set the agenda, and language is so important to how we perceive our athletes – as leaders, as role models.

“The bar is a simple one: if you are addressing a former India captain, if you wouldn’t in a million years call MS Dhoni “my dear” then it shouldn’t even cross your mind to address Mithali Raj as such,” she added as she posted a series of tweets.

Her views were shared by fellow cricket writer Raf Nicholson, who said, “Can’t believe this has to be said in 2020 but please DO NOT call female players ‘my dear’ or tell them to ‘keep smiling’ when you are interviewing them in the post-match. FFS”.