ICL: Indian Cricket League

Gayle vows to fight board all the way


gayleWest Indies’ under-fire captain, Chris Gayle, has said there is “no love lost” between himself and the West Indies Cricket Board and he has vowed he will fight his bosses every inch of the way as the team’s off-field problems escalated on the eve of the first Twenty20 international at The Oval.

On Monday Ken Gordon, the president of the WICB, and the tour manager, Mike Findlay, issued Gayle with a strong reprimand after he criticised the team’s preparations in his weekly Cricinfo diary. It was later suggested by the West Indies Players’ Association that the comments had been cleared for publication by Findlay himself. WIPA went on to accuse the board of attempting to widen the gulf between itself and the players.

The board has said it intends to pursue the matter further after the tour, but seeing as West Indies were forced to field five club cricketers in their warm-up game against England Lions last Thursday because of the late arrival of their one-day specialists, Gayle is adamant that he has nothing for which to apologise.

“Will I stand up to the board? Yes, that’s me,” said Gayle. “I always stand up for what I believe in and when I’m wrong, I’m wrong and when I’m right, I’m right. If there are going to be any consequences you have to stand up and deal with it as a man. I’m always ready for anything.

“I’m a big man. I’m always up for the challenge and, whatever the situation may be, I am here to handle it and deal with it whatever the circumstances may be. This is crunch time. This has been a real challenge to deal with, everything happening at one time, but as you go on in life things are going to get tougher. You have to deal with these situations, be a man and stand up and handle it.

“There is no love lost between myself and the board,” Gayle added. “These things happen and you just have to move on in life and not take these things personally against each other. I am in the right frame of mind. I have been in tougher situations than this before and I have dug myself out of it and I am just looking forward to contributing to the team as well.”

Gayle now has to compartmentalise his frustrations and attempt to lead his team to victory over Paul Collingwood’s new-look England at The Oval on Thursday. “To be honest I didn’t think it was the right time for the board to deal with these things,” he said. “I have the cricket to focus on. I have put the negatives aside and tried to be positive because I have a role to play as a captain as well.”

But, he added, the row has served to bind his players closer together. “That is something we have had discussions about,” he said. “We have had team meetings and discussed trying to put the negatives aside and try and plan how we are going to compete against England. It’s been a good unit so far and hopefully we can take what we have done in the practice games into the middle tomorrow.”

Source:Cricket News

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