MANCHESTER, England – Talismanic opener Chris Gayle has rescinded his One-Day International retirement and will now be available to face India in a three-match series in the Caribbean this August.
He made the announcement today, four months after he indicated that the ongoing ICC World Cup would be his swansong from the ODI format.
“My plans are for the World Cup. Maybe a Test match against India and then I’ll play, definitely play the ODIs against India,” he told media ahead of tomorrow’s contest against India at Old Trafford.
“I won’t play the T20s. That’s my plan after World Cup.”
India play West Indies in two Tests, three ODIs and three T20 Internationals from August 3-30.
Gayle, who turns 40 in September, is West Indies’ most experienced player at the World Cup. He has played 295 ODIs and scored 10 345 runs, along with 25 hundreds.
He played the last of his 103 Tests five years ago and has amassed 7 214 runs with 15 hundreds at an average of 42. Significantly, Gayle is one of just four players in the history of the game with two triple hundreds.
Reflecting on an illustrious career, Gayle abandoned all modesty as he placed himself among the greats.
“I’m definitely up there. I’m definitely up there with the greats without a doubt,” he said.
“Like I say, I enjoy each and every moment of West Indies, playing for West Indies. It’s still not the end. I still have a few games to go. Maybe another series to go – who knows? We’ll see what happens.
“It’s been a lot of ups and downs. I’ve got to say I really enjoy each and every moment but we share some quality moments with some quality players as well. I started my career with the likes of Courtney Walsh, Curtly Ambrose. You watch them on TV and you realize they’re in the dressing room, it’s just a bunch of guys.
“And Brian Lara, the first captain as well, Carl Hooper. So it’s some quality moments when you look back on it. I’ll have to analyse it and give you full details, a better exclusive interview on that particular moment and then you can take it further. But like I said, I could not have had a better career as a player representing the West Indies.”
Over the last decade, Gayle has also become the face of the shortest format and is currently the leading run-getter with nearly 13 000 runs from 384 matches with 21 hundreds.
However, he said his exploits in Test and one-day cricket had been the stellar moments in his career to date.
“Two triple centuries in Test cricket – those two will definitely be on top,” he said.
“A double century in the World Cup as well – those are a couple of the moments to come up with at this particular time, but there’s a lot more to actually talk about. If I get into detail it will be a long list, to be honest with you but I’ll stick with those for now,” he said.
Although Gayle plans to extend his career a little longer, he said the future of West Indian cricket would fall into good hands, and he singled out Nicholas Pooran as one who will carry the team forward.
“The future is bright for West Indies cricket, without a doubt. Nicholas Pooran is going to be a savage youngster, trust me on that one.
“But Pooran, his work ethic – I must commend Pooran’s work ethic. It’s fantastic for a youngster to actually just come into the team. And he’s going to be a world-beater, knock on wood.” (CMC)