Kolkata: The ongoing India vs West Indies series has been very much of a one-sided contest barring that last match where the hosts pulled off a miraculous win. To make this contest a much more even one, the West Indies has recalled star T20 batsman Chris Gayle to the squad for the one-off T20I against India on July 9 in Sabina Park.
Gayle last played in the shortest format for the West Indies in the ICC World T20 2016 where they won the title surpassing England in the final. After helping them become the T20 World champions for the second time, the powerful left-hander hinted at the fact that he might not play for the West Indies again as the relationship between the players and the West Indies Cricket Board (now Cricket West Indies) had worsened to a very sour level.
What’s more interesting is that Gayle, who is the highest run-scorer for the West Indies in the shortest format with 1,519 runs which includes two centuries has never played a T20I at the Sabina Park. Thus gives him a really good opportunity to have a go and reinstate his dominance in the format.
Courtney Browne, the Cricket West Indies chairman of selectors said, “We welcome Chris back to the T20 squad. He is the most prolific batsman in this format and will add value to our team at the top of the order.”
He added, “He will get the chance to play on his home ground and against a top-quality Indian team.”
The aggressive left-hander hit a ton against England way back in 2016 during the T20 World Cup that gave his side a much needed momentum going further into the tournament which they eventually won. But what’s a sign of worry is that he hasn’t been in good touch as was seen in the IPL where he scored only 200 runs in the nine matches he played. But international cricket is a different ball game and West Indies would want him to fire at the top of the order.
Besides Gayle, the West Indies has also included Sunil Narine and Kieron Pollard for the T20 match. While Narine played for the West Indies last month against Afghanistan, Pollard last played for them in the T20I series against Pakistan some months ago.