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BBC tells presenter his ‘little Barbie’ comment to female cricketer is ‘not appropriate’

By Issy Ronald, CNN

(CNN) — A BBC presenter has been told by the corporation that a comment he made toward a female Australian cricketer was “not appropriate” after he called her a “little Barbie” during a match interview earlier this week.

Presenter Chris Hughes made the comment to Maitlan Brown on Tuesday after the sportswoman said her Southern Brave team had bonded by playing a practice game and going to the cinema to see the “Barbie” movie.

Hughes responded: “You’re a little Barbie yourself with your blue eyes,” adding: “She’s blushing now.”

A BBC spokesperson said in a statement to CNN Thursday: “We have spoken to Chris and explained that his comment was not appropriate.”

All-rounder Brown and the Braves eventually defeated the Trent Rockets by 27 runs in their opening match of “The Hundred,” a franchise cricket competition based in the UK.

Hughes, who rose to fame in 2017 as a contestant on the reality TV dating show “Love Island,” is part of the BBC’s presenting line-up for “The Hundred,” and has also contributed to ITV’s horseracing coverage.

His comments toward Brown were met with criticism on social media.

LBC presenter Nick Ferrari said that Hughes is “young enough to know better,” while one Twitter user commented: “Had to rewind to check id heard it right. Took a while to go back a few decades but yep, there it was (sic).”

CNN has reached out to Hughes’ representatives for comment.

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