Chris Gayle said that his aim is to win the third Twenty20 World Cup for West Indies. His international career was a matter of speculation as the Universe boss had declared that 2019 World Cup would be his last appearance as a Windies player. But he backtracked right after the tournament. Arguably the best Twenty20 player has set his eyes on a return to international cricket in the T20I series against Sri Lanka. He said it’s the ‘willpower of the mind’ that pushes him to perform at the big stage.
Chris Gayle was playing the Pakistan Super League when he got a call from the West Indies’ board. He said – “When I got the call and they asked if I’m willing and interested, I said: ‘Yes, I want to play for West Indies. That’s where my heart is. I’m never going to turn down anything pertaining to West Indies cricket at this particular time. So I came back from Pakistan to be a part of the set-up leading into the World Cup so we can have a unity within the group, and then hopefully we can win this T20 trophy.”
Gayle accepted that an international return wasn’t a part of his plans. “I wasn’t actually thinking down this road. I was like, I’m going to play franchise cricket, entertaining people as much as possible,” the big man said. The T20 World Cup is going to be played in India in this year’s October-November. West Indies would be aiming to win the title for a record third time. No other team has achieved this feat until now. West Indies won the tournament in 2012 and in 2016.
“I want to accomplish, starting off by winning the series, but the bigger picture is actually to get three T20 titles under my belt. That’s actually the goal I’m setting in my head by winning the T20 World Cup. We have quite a few series coming up and we have a lot of cricket leading up to that. We’ll try and take as much as possible out of these series coming up,” Gayle added.
Gayle was seen practicing in the nets ahead of the first T20 against Sri Lanka:
Last year, Gayle was used as a no. 3 batsman in the IPL where he performed well so no. 3 can be the new position for the big hitter. Gayle concluded by saying: “If it’s opening, I’m ready, No. 3, No. 5 – I’m pretty much flexible. I will still be the best No. 5 in the world, best No. 3 in the world.”
The 1st T20I between West Indies and Sri Lanka will be played on 4 March, 3:30 am IST at Antigua. (3 March, 6 pm local time)