Gayle makes himself unavailable for Pakistan Series
St John’s, Antigua – Opening batsman Chris Gayle has informed the Board that he will not make himself available to play in the Pakistan leg of the Digicel Series and that he prefers to play in the Indian Premier League instead.
Gayle informed the WICB that he had received an offer to participate in the IPL and applied to the WICB for a No Objection Certificate to cover the entire duration of the IPL which clashes with the Pakistan leg of the Digicel Series.
The WICB granted the NOC only after Gayle officially notified the Board of his decision not to make himself available for selection for the Pakistan leg of the Digicel Series.
The WICB does not accept Gayle’s reason for making himself unavailable but as he has already clearly made his choice and has travelled to India, the WICB does not wish to stand in his way.
As it relates to this matter the WICB wishes to make the following abundantly clear:
- At the conclusion of the Cricket World Cup, Gayle underwent a medical examination in the UK.
- Following Gayle’s consultation with a UK doctor it was determined that he would require at least 2 to 3 weeks of rest before returning to training.
- The WICB medical personnel had been communicating with Gayle on the status and management of his injury since his return to Jamaica following the Cricket World Cup, this included arrangements for his rehabilitative programme.
- Gayle was undergoing rehabilitative work with an appointed physiotherapist and had already attended ten sessions. The next phase was to include sport-specific training along with a running programme.
- After the resumption of training the WICB Team Management would have organized a fitness test to assess Gayle’s fitness and decisions would have then been taken about his selection to the West Indies team to face Pakistan. It is clear that there was no way that Gayle could have been considered for selection for the first two Digicel ODIs given the facts outlined above.
- The WICB was surprised to learn that Gayle had been making arrangements to play cricket in India when the WICB was under the clear impression that he was recovering from injury and was undergoing rehabilitation work and about to resume training.
- The WICB has only selected two West Indies squads to date:
i) the Digicel Twenty20 squad and
ii) the squad for the First and Second Digicel ODI
8. The squads for the Third, Fourth and Fifth Digicel ODIs and the Digicel Tests have not yet been selected.
9. It is therefore not accurate, as has been insinuated in some quarters, that Gayle was not selected for the ENTIRE Pakistan leg of the Digicel Series.
10. In discussing his application for an NOC, the WICB has repeatedly informed Gayle that he is expected to resume training after which he would be required to undergo a fitness test and once passed fit, he will be considered for selection for the remainder of the Pakistan Series.
11. After the refusal to sign retainer contracts, the WICB deliberately sought to engage the players in discussions to avoid any conflict over the IPL and commitments to West Indies cricket.
12. The WICB accepted that players would want to play in the IPL but equally impressed upon the players that they must show a commitment to West Indies cricket and plans for the development of West Indies cricket.
13. The WICB is most disappointed in the manner in which Gayle has handled the entire situation, especially given the mature and cooperative manner in which two other players who refused contracts– Dwayne Bravo and Kieron Pollard – made themselves available for selection and agreed to an understanding in the best interest of West Indies cricket.