French DJ Martin Solveig has apologised after he was criticised for asking the first ever winner of the female Ballon D’Or if she knew “how to twerk”.
The DJ was met with a curt “No” by Norway forward Ada Hegerberg as she collected the award at the ceremony last night.
While the question was met with swift condemnation on social media, Solveig says that Hegerberg told him after the ceremony she “understood it was a joke”.
Posting on Twitter, he wrote: “Sincere apologies to the one I may have offended.
“My point was: I don’t invite women to twerk but dance on a Sinatra song. Watch the full sequence.”
In a video apology that accompanied the post, he said that the moment had been taken out of context.
“I didn’t mean to offend anyone and I didn’t know that this could be seen as as such an offence, especially when you consider the sequence in total when we ended up dancing to Frank Sinatra,” he explained.
He added: “I explained to @AdaStolsmo the buzz and she told me she understood it was a joke. Nevertheless my apologies to anyone who may have been offended. Most importantly congratulations to Ada.”
However, he still faced scrutiny from Wimbledon ace Andy Murray.
“Another example of the ridiculous sexism that still exists in sport,” wrote Murray on Instagram.
“To everyone who thinks people are overreacting and it was just a joke… it wasn’t. I’ve been involved in sport my whole life and the level of sexism is unreal.”