Star batsman Chris Gayle says he is deeply saddened by the decision of the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) to axe Dwayne Bravo and Kieron Pollard from the ICC World Cup squad.
Gayle made the comments during the post match presentation for the second Twenty20 International (T20I) in Johannesburg today where he hammered a phenomenal 41-ball 90 to help the West Indies to a tremendous four-wicket win against South Africa.
“To be honest, I’m so glad we actually won the series . . . this morning I woke up and saw the World Cup squad, and there was no [Kieron] Pollard and no [Dwayne] Bravo. It really hurts deeply inside, and that’s the reason I actually wanted to win the series. We have the best team here, and to see those two guys excluded is sad for West Indies cricket. If you really believe in our ability, those two guys should be in West Indies cricket, both in South Africa for the 50-over tournament, and in the World Cup squad,” Gayle said.
The 15-man West Indies squad announced on Saturday evening will be led by Barbadian Jason Holder, who was named as skipper for the five-match series against South Africa bowling off later this month.
The WICB’s decision to exclude the two experiencedTrinidadians comes on the heels of a recent bitter pay impasse between the players, their association and the Board, which led to a costly pull out by the Bravo-led team from their series with India after the fourth ODI in Dharamsala on October 17.
The matter, which has triggered a demand by the Board for Cricket Control in India for US$42 million in damages from WICB, is still not yet fully settled.